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

SOUTH AFRICA: South Africa Conducts Trials for Shorter TB Treatment


Agence France Presse (03.30.12) - Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Medical trials that aim to shorten the duration of TB treatment are underway in South Africa, according to researchers.

"Fighting tuberculosis is going to require new strategies," said Gavin Churchyard, CEO of the independent research body the Aurum Institute. "The ongoing trial aimed at reducing the treatment period from six to four months is one of the new strategies of fighting the disease." The TB Research Center, which is based in a public hospital in the Tembisa township east of Johannesburg, is the trial site. Tembisa has a high TB infection rate.

Many TB patients fail to complete treatment due to difficulty adhering to the months-long regimen and tolerating the medicines' side effects. "The long period of treatment has been identified as one of the reasons for poor adherence, resulting in drug-resistant TB strains, which are more expensive to treat," said Christopher Viehbacher, CEO of the French pharmaceutical firm Sanofi.

Aurum has partnered with Sanofi to increase TB research capacity. "No organization can work alone to make a meaningful contribution towards eliminating the disease," said Viehbacher.


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Information in this article was accurate in April 4, 2012. 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.