Combination Therapy Shows Promise for Treating TBadmin
According to TB Alliance, tuberculosis (TB) kills someone approximately every 20 seconds. Available treatments take can take up to 2 years to work, are expensive and complicated to administer, and can also be toxic and lead to drug resistant strains. However, new research has uncovered a strategy to treat the most deadly strain of the disease known as extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis (XDR TB).
Science reports that Nix-TB, a combination therapy of three antibiotics (bedaquiline, pretomanid, and linezolid) has been able to cure sufferers in just six months. In a trial in South Africa the treatment was administered to 34 people, and of those 34, 20 were able to stop taking the drugs and at this point only one person has relapsed. “I didn’t in my wildest dreams expect the results to be this successful,” Francesca Conradie of the University of Witwatersrand told Science.
While the Nix-TB protocol is designed to treat XDR TB, it could also be modifed and used to treat multidrug-resistant (MDR) TB in the future. While factors such as cost and implementation still have yet to be fully determined, researchers are hopeful that this will provide a solution for this global pandemic.