Today on World TB Day, the International Scientific Exchange Foundation of China (ISEFC), announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with the Global Alliance for TB Drug Development (TB Alliance) to establish the Global Health R&D Center of China (GHRC). This innovative center will focus on the development of treatments for the world’s leading infectious disease killers—tuberculosis, malaria, and HIV/AIDS.
This is a ground-breaking partnership that will create the first Chinese not-for profit product development partnership (PDP), which is a class of partnerships that bridge public- and private-sector interests to develop pharmaceutical products for neglected diseases. Hui Yongzheng, the Chairman of the ISEFC Committee, comments, “It will be a center of excellence, which can harness international innovation and China’s growing research and development capabilities to meet the public health needs of the Chinese people and the rest of the world.”
This announcement comes on the heels of news from the “Fifth National Tuberculosis Epidemiology Site Survey” released by China’s Ministry of Health that over 500 million Chinese are infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis which is 45% of the country’s population. In terms of morbidity and mortality, 1.3 million Chinese develop active TB and 150,000 deaths occur each year. “The creation of the GHRC will help to ensure that these promising new therapies will be developed and available to TB patients in China,” says Dr. Mel Spigelman, President and CEO of the TB Alliance, which has contributed significantly to the largest pipeline of TB drugs in history.
The GHRC is poised to be another great ally in finding treatments that will help the fight against TB and other diseases aiding in the alleviation of suffering of millions of patients around the world.
For full press release, click here.