A team of innovators taps artificial intelligence and data analytics to battle an ancient foe.
When The Mueller Health Foundation (MHF) focused on advancing treatments for tuberculosis (TB), its founders knew they had set the bar high. The disease, which has devastated humans throughout history, has grown more deadly with the rise of drug-resistant strains.
But the family foundation was up for the challenge. Foundation President Peter Mueller, PhD, newly retired from a highly successful career as a biopharmaceutical researcher and executive, had shepherded several medicines for difficult or untreatable diseases from discovery to market. Foundation Director Ulrike Mueller had focused her medical career searching for a cure for infectious diseases, while Executive Director Judith Mueller, a nonprofit executive, is fluent in data analytics, performance metrics and artificial intelligence.
The foundation team needed the right partner—an innovative organization
whose approach bridged research and the clinic, one that understands how new technologies can accelerate drug discovery and mitigate the challenges of working in developing countries with variable infrastructure.
They didn’t expect their search to lead to Boston Children’s, but they were intrigued by the hospital’s innovative, data-driven approach to TB research and focus on understanding how and why TB becomes drug resistant. The hospital’s expertise and vision synced with the Muellers’.
The foundation established a partnership with Boston Children’s and set bold goals: find new treatments, save lives. “We can make a big impact on people’s lives,” the Muellers say. “We have the expertise, money and will.”Now, they are taking the next critical leap and building connections with similarly focused researchers across the institution.
Judith Mueller helps nonprofits and communities tell their stories through numbers and data. Here, she relates the story of the partnership between The Mueller Health Foundation and Boston Children’s.
Our drive to implement The Mueller Health Foundation Drug Resistant Tuberculosis (TB) Research Initiative is fueled by our passion to join the fight against TB after learning about the brave battles that
who fell ill from TB last year alone face in the world today.
With an annual death toll of approximately 1.4 million people, predominantly located in low-income countries,
Learning about these statistics and hearing personal stories of people affected by TB was our call to action! Combining the dreams of
to help those affected by TB with the work of
has led to
With $1,461,000 already contributed by MHF to this partnership, the goal is to identify compound leads for new anti-TB drugs. What drives our partnership is our
to see the global health risk posed by TB to be greatly diminished over the next 15 years. We hope to achieve global impact by significantly reducing the current
to make for a better patient experience and to ultimately reduce the up-to-2 million TB-related deaths every year. We hope to give the millions affected by TB the gift of
For us at MHF, the greatest reward is to see countless children and adults smiling and achieving their dreams after being successfully treated for TB—the joy we feel from this success is