Unitaid Approves $30 Million for Groundbreaking Tuberculosis Test
News Jun 15, 2012
The Xpert assay represents a major advance for the diagnosis of tuberculosis, as it is based on the recognition of the DNA of the tuberculosis bacillus and provides dependable results directly from sputum samples in less than 2 hours. This method of diagnosis is much more reliable than microscopy, currently used in most laboratories. In addition, Xpert also detects resistance to rifampicin, one of the most commonly used drugs for the treatment of tuberculosis.
Through the agreement reached by UNITAID, the United States Government and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the manufacturer of Xpert, Cepheid, will significantly reduce the price of diagnostic cartridges from today’s $17 to less than $10.
This price reduction will allow an accelerated roll-out of the test, which was endorsed by the World Health Organization in December 2010. It will apply to more than 145 purchasers in low and middle income countries, including those with high-burden of multi-drug resistant tuberculosis and co-infection of HIV and tuberculosis.
Xpert will be rolled-out in around 20 countries, under the leadership of WHO and the Stop TB Partnership, which will administer the UNITAID grant.
In addition, the "TB REACH" initiative of the Stop TB Partnership, supported by the Canadian Government, will co-fund up to US$ 10 million the implementation of the tests in countries, drawing upon its experiences gained so far in the early introduction of the test in selected countries.
Xpert, once introduced and widely scaled-up, is expected to dramatically reduce the diagnostic gaps for tuberculosis, in particular in its multi-drug resistant form, or associated with an HIV infection.
However, this diagnostic breakthrough will only trigger a reduction of the burden of tuberculosis if the new cases it will identify will receive an appropriate treatment. Governments and donors will need to identify sufficient funding for this purpose in the coming years.
Edith Heard Unanimously Selected as Next Director General of EMBLNews
At its 53rd meeting yesterday, EMBL Council selected Edith Heard as the organization’s fifth Director General. Heard’s mandate is scheduled to begin 1 January 2019.READ MORE
CRISPR Transforms Living Cells Into Data Storage DevicesNews
Genome engineering technology transforms living cells into archival data storage devices that capture, store, and propagate information over time.READ MORE
Single Molecule microRNA Technology Proves Useful for Liver Toxicity DetectionNews
Breakthrough research published in PLOS ONE demonstrates quantitative, PCR-free detection of microRNA.READ MORE
Comments | 0 ADD COMMENT
EMBL Course: Next Generation Sequencing: RNA Sequencing Library Preparation
Apr 23 - Apr 27, 2018
EMBO Practical Course: Microbial Metagenomics: A 360º Approach
Apr 23 - Apr 30, 2018
EMBL Course: Next Generation Sequencing: Whole Genome Sequencing Library Preparation
Apr 16 - Apr 20, 2018