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CDC HIV/AIDS/Viral Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update

GLOBAL: TB Prevention May Boost Drug Resistance, Study Finds


Bloomberg (04.10.13)

In a study published on April 10 in Science Translational Medicine, researchers led by Harriet Mills of the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom have said that treating an entire community with the generic drug isoniazid may increase the possibility of drug resistance in that population, which calls into question large-scale public health interventions. According to the study, prevention of TB— the world’s second-deadliest infectious disease with 1.4 million deaths in 2011—may unintentionally increase drug resistance to more dangerous strains of the disease, especially among HIV-infected patients. The World Health Organization recommends giving isoniazid to HIV-positive individuals as they are more likely to develop severe TB in comparison to healthier individuals. While most TB can be cured with antibiotics, drug-resistant strains of the disease afflict approximately 630,000 individuals globally. A study published in August stated that almost half of the TB patients who had received prior treatment were resistant to a second-line drug, suggesting that the infection might become “virtually untreatable.”


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Information in this article was accurate in April 15, 2013. The state of the art may have changed since the publication date. This material is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between you and your doctor. Always discuss treatment options with a doctor who specializes in treating HIV.