Simplified Therapy To Prevent TB Proven Effective In Developing Countries

March 13, 1998

People with HIV in developing countries are far more likely to contract tuberculosis than those without HIV. Although drugs to help prevent TB are available, the normal course of treatment is 12 months, making it difficult for people to comply with treatment especially in countries where access to care is a problem as is monitoring medication. In most developing countries preventive therapy for high risk individuals is not given because of limited resources. Researchers at the Johns Hopkins School of Public have found that a simplified regimen of twice-weekly doses of isoniazid preventive therapy administered for six months or rifampicin and pyrazinamide administered for only two months provided similar overall protection against tuberculosis in HIV-infected, PPD-positive adults.

The study was published in the March 14, 1998 issue of Lancet. Lead author Neal Halsey, MD, professor, International Health, said, "We need to look for innovative and practical ways to prevent TB in developing countries. The current strategy of emphasizing, early diagnosis and treatment of active cases can be improved upon with minimal added resources."

The study looked at 750 participants who were randomly assigned to receive either six months of isoniazid or two months of rifampicin and pyrazinamide given just twice per week. All participants were HIV positive and had a positive purified-protein derivative (PPD) skin test but no signs of active disease. Both regimens proved to be effective in preventing active TB. However, compliance with treatment was higher for those who received the shorter course of treatment. Adherence was strongly associated with duration of treatment. Co-author Richard Chaisson, MD, associate professor, International Health said, "This is great leap forward in finding a way to prevent TB in a lot of people who previously would not have been able to receive appropriate preventive measures."

The results of this study were presented to an expert panel assembled last month by UNAIDS and the World Health Organization that considered treatments to prevent tuberculosis in people with HIV. The two regimens used by the Hopkins researchers will be the centerpiece of new global recommendations, expected to be issued later this year.

Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health

Related Tuberculosis Articles from Brightsurf:

Scientists find new way to kill tuberculosis
Scientists have discovered a new way of killing the bacteria that cause tuberculosis (TB), using a toxin produced by the germ itself.

Blocking the iron transport could stop tuberculosis
The bacteria that cause tuberculosis need iron to survive. Researchers at the University of Zurich have now solved the first detailed structure of the transport protein responsible for the iron supply.

Tuberculosis: New insights into the pathogen
Researchers at the University of W├╝rzburg and the Spanish Cancer Research Centre have gained new insights into the pathogen that causes tuberculosis.

Unmasking the hidden burden of tuberculosis in Mozambique
The real burden of tuberculosis is probably higher than estimated, according to a study on samples from autopsies performed in a Mozambican hospital.

HIV/tuberculosis co-infection: Tunneling towards better diagnosis
1.2 million people in the world are co-infected by the bacteria which causes tuberculosis and AIDS.

Reducing the burden of tuberculosis treatment
A research team led by MIT has developed a device that can lodge in the stomach and deliver antibiotics to treat tuberculosis, which they hope will make it easier to cure more patients and reduce health care costs.

Tuberculosis: Commandeering a bacterial 'suicide' mechanism
The bacteria responsible for tuberculosis can be killed by a toxin they produce unless it is neutralized by an antidote protein.

A copper bullet for tuberculosis
Tuberculosis is a sneaky disease, and the number one cause of death from infectious disease worldwide.

How damaging immune cells develop during tuberculosis
Insights into how harmful white blood cells form during tuberculosis infection point to novel targets for pharmacological interventions, according to a study published in the open-access journal PLOS Pathogens by Valentina Guerrini and Maria Laura Gennaro of Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, and colleagues.

How many people die from tuberculosis every year?
The estimates for global tuberculosis deaths by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) differ considerably for a dozen countries, according to a study led by ISGlobal.

Read More: Tuberculosis News and Tuberculosis Current Events is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to