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Tuberculosis
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April 2022

NIH Funds New Tuberculosis Research Advancement Centers

April 06, 2022

The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health, today announced four new grant awards to establish Tuberculosis Research Advancement Centers (TRACs). The centers will support the development of a next generation of tuberculosis (TB) researchers by providing focused mentoring and funding support for new investigators; opportunities for multidisciplinary and collaborative research; and training in laboratory and clinical settings. The total funding in the first year of these five-year grants is approximately $4.3 million.

Scanning electron micrograph of Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacteria, which cause TB.

March 2022

World TB Day 2022—Invest to End TB. Save Lives

March 24, 2022

Today marks the 140th anniversary of the announcement by Dr. Robert Koch that tuberculosis (TB) is caused by the bacterium Mycobacterium tuberculosis. World TB Day is a reminder that this ancient disease remains a relentless killer. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health, affirms its commitment to the 2022 World TB Day theme, Invest to End TB. Save Lives, by supporting and conducting wide-ranging research aimed at reducing the health and economic impacts of TB.

March 2021

NIH Awards Grants to Support Bacteriophage Therapy Research

March 11, 2021

NIAID has awarded $2.5 million in grants to 12 institutes around the world to support research on bacteriophage therapy.

A computer-generated image of a bacteriophage, featuring a bulbous “head” on top of a long stalk with spindly “legs”

October 2020

Landmark TB Trial Identifies Shorter-Course Treatment Regimen

October 21, 2020

Results from a CDC and NIAID-sponsored clinical trial identify shorter-course treatment regimen for tuberculosis (TB).

February 2020

Recent Advances in Addressing Tuberculosis Give Hope for Future

February 11, 2020

NIAID Director Anthony S. Fauci, M.D., and other Institute officials summarize progress in improved TB diagnostics, therapeutics and prevention approaches.

micrograph of TB-causing bacteria

January 2020

Changed Route of Immunization Dramatically Improves Efficacy of TB Vaccine

January 01, 2020

Tuberculosis (TB), an ancient disease, is the leading infectious cause of death globally, yet the world’s only licensed TB vaccine, Bacille Calmette-Guerin (BCG), was developed a century ago. Given to infants via a needle placed just under the skin, BCG protects babies from a form of the disease called disseminated TB but is far less effective at preventing pulmonary TB, the major cause of illness and deaths, in teens or adults. 

Images of animal lungs showing substantial areas of TB infection (top row) or very little or no infection (bottom row)

October 2019

In Women with HIV, TB Preventive Therapy Poses Greater Risk in Pregnancy than Postpartum

October 02, 2019

Study results published today help clarify how to safely prevent tuberculosis (TB) in women living with HIV who are pregnant or have recently given birth, are taking antiretroviral therapy, and live where TB is highly prevalent. 

Photograph of a pregnant woman

September 2019

NIH Awards Contracts to Advance Tuberculosis Immunology Research

September 26, 2019

The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health, has awarded $30 million in first-year funding to establish new centers for immunology research to accelerate progress in tuberculosis (TB) vaccine development. 

Scanning electron micrograph of Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacteria which cause tuberculosis

June 2019

NIH Launches Large TB Prevention Trial for People Exposed to Multidrug-Resistant TB

June 25, 2019

A large clinical trial to assess treatments for preventing people at high risk from developing multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) has begun. The study is comparing the safety and efficacy of a new MDR-TB drug, delamanid, with the decades-old TB drug isoniazid for preventing active MDR-TB disease in children, adolescents and adults at high risk who are exposed to adult household members with MDR-TB.

micrograph of Mtb bacteria

Immune Cells Play Unexpected Role in Early Tuberculosis Infection

June 05, 2019

A class of immune cells called innate lymphoid cells (ILCs) mediates the body’s initial defense against tuberculosis (TB), according to a report published online today in Nature. Boosting this response may provide a new approach to developing treatments and vaccines against TB, which causes more deaths worldwide than any other single infectious disease. The research was supported in part by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), a component of the National Institutes of Health.

Innate lymphoid cells (green) near and within a small area of inflammation in a non-human primate infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the bacteria that cause TB

March 2019

Tuberculosis Diagnosis in People with HIV Increases Risk of Death Within 10 Years

March 06, 2019

Among people with HIV in Latin America, those diagnosed with tuberculosis (TB) at an initial clinic visit were about twice as likely to die within 10 years as people not initially diagnosed with TB, according to findings from a large observational study. This increased risk persisted despite the availability of TB treatment and mirrored patterns seen previously in HIV-negative populations, according to research supported by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health.

Dr. Samuel Pierre uses a stethoscope to examine a patient’s lungs at the GHESKIO clinic in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

January 2019

Temperature-Stable Experimental Tuberculosis Vaccine Enters Clinical Testing

January 23, 2019

Vaccinations have begun in a Phase 1 human clinical trial testing a freeze-dried, temperature-stable formulation of an experimental tuberculosis (TB) vaccine candidate. The trial is being conducted at the Saint Louis University School of Medicine Center for Vaccine Development and will enroll as many as 48 healthy adult volunteers aged 18 to 55 years. The experimental vaccine, called ID93, was developed by scientists at the Infectious Disease Research Institute (IDRI) in Seattle.

Scanning electron micrograph of Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacteria

September 2018

NIAID Releases Strategic Plan to Address Tuberculosis Research

September 26, 2018

WHAT:
Tuberculosis (TB) is the leading infectious cause of death worldwide, killing roughly 1.6 million people in 2017. In the past 200 years, TB claimed the lives of more than one billion people—more deaths than from malaria, influenza, smallpox, HIV/AIDS, cholera and plague combined.

Scanning electron micrograph of Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacteria

March 2018

NIH Experts Call for Transformative Research Approach to End Tuberculosis

March 09, 2018

A more intensive biomedical research approach is necessary to control and ultimately eliminate tuberculosis (TB), according to a perspective published in the March 2018 issue of The American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. In the article, authors Anthony S. Fauci, M.D., director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health, and Robert W.

May 2017

Mycobacteria Use Protein to Create Diverse Populations, Avoid Drugs

May 31, 2017

Subgroups of tuberculosis (TB)-causing bacteria can persist even when antibiotics wipe out most of the overall population. The need to eliminate these persistent subpopulations is one reason why TB treatment regimens are so lengthy. Now, researchers have shown that a single protein allows mycobacteria to generate diverse populations that can avoid TB drugs. The protein may be a target for intervention; blocking it might result in less mycobacterial diversity and shorten TB treatment courses.

Mycobacteria in left panel have lamA gene.Cells on the right are missing lamA and are killed faster and more uniformly by the antibiotic.

March 2017

NIH Statement on World Tuberculosis Day

March 24, 2017

Statement of Christine F. Sizemore, PhD., Richard Hafner, M.D., and Anthony S. Fauci, M.D. 
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
National Institutes of Health

December 2016

NIH-Supported Scientists Accelerate Immune Response to Tuberculosis in Mice

December 22, 2016

WHAT:
New research findings provide insight into the immune system pathways that may be key to developing an effective tuberculosis (TB) vaccine. The study, to be published Thursday in the journal Nature Communications, was supported by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health.

September 2016

NIH-Funded Researchers Find Signs TB Can Persist in Lungs Despite Treatment

September 06, 2016

It has been known that the microbe that causes TB, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, can persist in the lungs even after patient tissue samples test negative for the bacteria. In new research appearing in Nature Medicine, intramural researchers at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health, together with NIAID grantees, found through the use of positron emission tomography/computerized tomography (PET/CT) scanning that TB lesions can remain in the lungs long after treatment with antibiotics has been completed.

March 2016

NIH Statement on World Tuberculosis Day

March 23, 2016

On World Tuberculosis (TB) Day 2016, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), reaffirms its commitment to researching ways to better understand, prevent, diagnose and treat TB. March 24 marks the day in 1882 when German microbiologist Robert Koch announced he had discovered Mycobacterium tuberculosis(Mtb), the bacterium that causes TB—an airborne disease that most often attacks the lungs.

Blood Test Can Predict Risk of Developing Tuberculosis

March 23, 2016

One-third of the world’s population is thought to be infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb), the bacterium that causes tuberculosis (TB), but just a small fraction ever develops symptomatic illness.