Health News Headlines – Yahoo News
Gates-backed TB drug to enter late-stage testing
By Julie Steenhuysen CHICAGO (Reuters) – The first experimental drug that fights both conventional and drug-resistant forms of tuberculosis is advancing to late-stage clinical testing, researchers said on Wednesday, raising hope for a new way to stem the growing threat of drug-resistant TB. The trial, financed in part by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, will test the safety and effectiveness of a new three-drug cocktail known as PaMZ that in mid-stage testing helped to significantly reduce treatment times. In a statement announcing the trial, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, co-chair of the Gates Foundation, said the treatment could “reduce the time required to cure drug-resistant TB from two years to just six months” and sharply cut the cost of a cure in low-income countries. The World Health Organization estimates that 8.6 million people developed TB in 2012 and 1.3 million died from the disease.