Researchers validate preclinical effectiveness of TB drug target

In research at SRI International, scientists evaluating new drug targets against tuberculosis (TB) recently validated the preclinical effectiveness of a target that could rapidly eliminate infections and potentially shorten treatment time. The new drug target is a protein called DNA gyrase B, found in bacteria that cause TB infections.

DNA gyrase is an enzyme consisting of two subunits: gyrase A and gyrase B. Although gyrase A is often the target of antibiotics, such as ciprofloxacin, there currently is no antibiotic on the market that targets gyrase B. In laboratory experiments, SRI researchers found that by targeting gyrase B, are killed whether they are replicating or dormant. Further studies will be conducted toward the development of a TB drug against gyrase B.

"One of the greatest needs in infectious disease treatment is a drug that allows a shorter length of treatment," said Peter Madrid, Ph.D., program director in the Center for Infectious Disease and Biodefense Research, SRI Biosciences Division. "Though our program is still in the preclinical phase of research, with a number of years of required testing ahead, our goal is to develop a drug that will improve the treatment process for TB patients."

currently undergo treatment for six months and take a combination of at least four different drugs. There are often challenges to treatment effectiveness because of the long treatment time, including low patient treatment compliance and high rates of . Tuberculosis that is resistant to multiple drugs takes even longer to treat, usually 18 to 24 months.

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Energy-saving bacteria resist antibiotics

Sep 03, 2008

Bacteria save energy by producing proteins that moonlight, having different roles at different times, which may also protect the microbes from being killed. The moonlighting activity of one enzyme from the tuberculosis bacterium ...

More molecules for tuberculosis

Mar 11, 2011

Scientists are collaborating on a new international research project to identify antibiotics that can kill tuberculosis and fight resistant strains.

Recommended for you

Routines most vital in avoiding Ebola infection: WHO

11 hours ago

Meticulously following stringent routines when putting on and removing protective equipment is more important than the kind of gear health care workers use to ward off Ebola infection, the World Health Organization said Friday.

A look at latest Ebola developments

12 hours ago

No African countries are on the United Nations list of contributors to fight Ebola. With few exceptions, African governments and institutions are offering only marginal support as the continent faces its ...

Liberia opens one of largest Ebola treatment centers

13 hours ago

Remembering those who have died in the world's deadliest Ebola outbreak, Liberia's president opened one of the country's largest Ebola treatment centers in Monrovia on Friday amid hopes that the disease is ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.