News Medical (08.02.2013)
Aids Weekly Plus
Boston Medical Center (BMC), Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM), and India’s Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (JIPMER) will participate in a joint TB research program funded by a five-year, $2.5 million grant from the Indo-US Vaccine Action Program. The program will be based in Pondicherry, India, where it will identify groups of TB patients and those within their households who also were exposed to the disease. Researchers will use these populations to investigate the impact of comorbidities, including smoking, alcoholism, worm infections, diabetes mellitus, and malnutrition, on TB risk and patient’s treatment response.
According to Jerrold Ellner, MD—chief of BMC’s section of infectious diseases, professor of medicine at BUSM, and the US principal investigator—the study will provide new diagnostic biomarkers to help determine which of the persons with heavy TB exposure had the highest risk of infection as well as targets for testing treatment interventions. After the researchers select participants, they will administer questionnaires, surveys, and physical examinations and collect specimens. They then will store these specimens and compare them with control specimens from the same cohort before sending them to a specialized laboratory at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey for analysis.