This week we interview Dr. Yossef Av-Gay and discuss his recently published paper, his contribution to TB drug discovery and the focus of his research. Dr. Av-Gay, a professor in the Division of Infectious Diseases at the University of British Columbia, recently published a paper in PNAS that provides evidence to that points to a specific protein that allows Mtb to bypass the body’s defenses. Additional TB R&D news links are included.
Today, the fourth annual G-FINDER survey tracking funding for research and development of neglected disease technologies was released. This year’s report shows that funding for product development is on the decline and product development partnerships (PDPs) have been particularly hard hit, as eight of the top twelve public donors cut their funding in 2010. Now is a time of tremendous opportunity, with dozens of potential products within the reach of patients–donors must commit to taking them across the finish line.
This week’s article looks at host factors that contribute to the ability of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) to enter and survive within macrophages. The authors explore the role of tyrosine kinases (TKs) as a mediator for Mtb and the use of an inhibitor of TKs to act against Mtb and related bacteria. Additional links to TB R&D news is included
Microbial geneticist Dr. Gyanu Lamichhane of the Johns Hopkins Center for Tuberculosis Research is one of 49 recipients of the New Innovator Award, which is given to promising scientists in the early stages of their careers and is supported directly with $1.5 million in research funding over five years. In this interview, we discuss the award and the related research that lead to the award, as well as, Dr. Lamichhane’s motivation to work with TB. Additional links to TB R&D news are included.
During last week, the Stop TB Partnership Working Group on New Drugs had a successful annual meeting in Lille, France, in conjunction with the 42nd Union World Conference. There were quite a few updates to the Global TB Drugs Pipeline showing progress toward the goal of better treatment for TB in all patient populations. Additional links to TB R&D news are included.
This week’s interview is with Dr. Sanjib Bhkata who is Head of Mycobacteria Research Laboratory, Microbiology, Department of Biological Sciences, Institute of Structural and Molecular Biology at the Birbeck University of London. Dr. Bhakta’s Laboratory has developed an innovative method for screening compounds that is more efficient and just as accurate as more widely used methods. Additional links to TB R&D news are included.
On September 16, the 4th International Workshop on Clinical Pharmacology of Tuberculosis Drugs was held adjacent to the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC) which was held from September 17 to 19. Between the two meetings, there were many updates related to TB drug development. Additional links to TB R&D are included.
This week, we provide an brief overview of research supported by CNRS, INSERM, Institut Pasteur and other donors providing new evidence of the role of Zinc in the body’s immune response to intracellular infection by M.tb. and the microbe’s strategy to subvert this defense. Additional links to TB R&D news are included.