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Researchers develop new tuberculosis treatment

Researchers develop new tuberculosis treatmentRCSI

Researchers from RCSI (Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland), St James Hospital, Trinity College Dublin, and Imperial College London have developed a new treatment for tuberculosis (TB). This work could offer a practical treatment that can potentially be scaled-up and mass-produced for clinical testing.

The treatment, which patients will take using an inhaler, works by reducing the bacteria in the lungs that causes tuberculosis while also helping the patient’s immune system fight the disease.

Funded by the Health Research Board (HRB) and the Royal City of Dublin Hospital Trust, the research is published in the European Journal of Pharmaceutics & Biopharmaceutics.

The work, led by Dr Gemma O’Connor and Prof Sally-Ann Cryan in RCSI, was carried out in collaboration with research teams in St James Hospital, Trinity and Imperial College London. Professor Joseph Keane and Dr Mary O’Sullivan led the team at St James Hospital and Trinity College Dublin with Dr Brian Robertson and Dr Nitya Krishnan leading the team at Imperial College London.

There is only one vaccine for tuberculosis, developed in 1921. It is unreliable in preventing the most common form of TB, and is not suitable in all patient groups. The vaccine works best against specific forms of TB and is usually given to infants in at-risk populations.

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