We are continuing to work hard together with our team at BostonChildren’s HospitalPrecision VaccinesProgram (PVP) on the development of newRNA vaccines against tuberculosis. It is our hope to have at least one vaccine candidate ready for anInvestigational NewDrug Application (IND) in2024.
Stay tuned for more updates!
July 2021 marks the one hundredth year of the administration of the firstdose of the BCG vaccine to humans. BCG is named after its inventors Basilde Colmet et Gurin, Dr. Albert Calmet and veterinarian Camille Gurin. Thevaccine was invented at the Institut Pasteur de Lille in France and it tookthe inventors about 20 years to make the vaccine. Because they wanted tomake the BCG vaccine available to as many people as possible, thescientists did not file a patent for their invention. The BCG vaccine iseffective only at preventing certain severe forms of TB in children (TBmeningitis and disseminated TB ); it is unfortunately ineffective atpreventing the most common form of TB, such as pulmonary TB, in adults .But despite these serious limitations, it remains the only TB vaccine in useto this day, a century after its introduction. While 14 TB vaccine candidatesare in trials as of August 2020, only two are in Phase 3 and there is asignificant need for continued research and funding to develop improvedand novel TB vaccines. For more news, please also take a look at our top 3 picks for July in thisnewsletter, where we highlight novel research findings and news around theprevention and treatment of tuberculosis around the world.
Every month, we at the Mueller Health Foundation like to show case interesting news and updates in the field of tuberculosis. Below are our top 3 picks for July:
1.Tuberculosis: The Forgotten Pandemic
Nowadays, BCG is given to more than 100 million babies each year, primarily in the developing world, and saves tens of thousands of lives. But it provides incomplete protection, and TB remains the number one infectious killer on the planet. It is estimated to have wiped out 1 billion people in the past 200 years, including 1.4 million in 2019 alone.Although BCG is currently the only available TB vaccine, researchers have for decades been working to develop abetter option. And after trialing dozens of approaches, with a handful of clinical failures, those in the field express hope that a second vaccine is close to its market debut.
You can access the full article at:
2. TAG- Tuberculosis Preventive Therapy Pipeline Report 2020
The Treatment Action Group’s (TAG) annual review provides an over view of research and development of innovations for diagnosing, preventing, treating, and curing of tuberculosis. Some of the most exciting advances in TB preventive therapy in the past two years have come from secondary analyses (of P1078 and BRIEF-TB), pharmacokinetic investigations (P2001), drug-drug interaction studies (DOLPHIN), biomarker research (CORTIS), pediatric studies(TiTi), and studies evaluating the durability of newer TPT regimens (WHIP3TB).
Read the full article here:
This month, we would like tohighlight some interesting statisticscomparing COVID-19 and TB vaccine milestones.
Year Causative PathogenIdentified:
COVID 19: 2019
Year First Vaccine Developed:
COVID 19: 2020
Number of Vaccine Candidates:
COVID 19: 109
Number of Vaccines Approved:
COVID 19: 14
Estimated Annual Deaths in 2020:
COVID 19: ~1.7 million
Tuberculosis: ~1.8 million
Global Funding Invested in Vaccine Development (Billion US):
COVID 19: 0.12
Source: TB Fact s: TB in Children https://www.healthaffairs.org/do/10.1377/hblog20210503.703348/full//
3.Nano-Patch Smells Skin to Detect Tuberculosis
A team of Israeli scientists report on a new diagnostic path way enabling a noninvasive, fast, and highly accurate way of detectingTB. The approach relies on TB-specific volatile organic compounds(VOCs) that are detected and quantified from the skin headspace. A specifically designed nano material-based sensors array translates these findings into a point-of-care diagnosis by discriminating between active pulmonary TB patients and controls with sensitivity above 90%. This fulfills the WHO’s triage test requirements and poses the potential to become a TB triage test.
To learn more, read the full paper here:
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