Rakesh Jain of Massachusetts General Hospital in the U.S. will develop a new treatment strategy for tuberculosis to boost the activity of existing anti-tuberculosis drugs. Tuberculosis is one of the most infectious diseases in the world. Current treatments are lengthy poorly tolerated and do not eradicate latent infections which are found in around one third of the general population and contribute to drug resistance. During latent infection the tuberculosis bacteria are dormant and reside in small inflammatory areas in the lungs known as granulomas. These granulomas are surrounded by abnormal blood vessels and dense tissue that they hypothesize make it difficult for drugs to permeate. They will use a small animal disease model and patient lung samples to test whether co-treatment with anti-angiogenics and anti-fibrotics can normalize the blood vessels and improve the delivery of anti-tuberculosis drugs thereby increasing their activity and potentially shortening treatment duration.
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