Focus: GS-III Science and Technology

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A small trial (Nix-TB) undertaken at three sites in South Africa to test the safety and efficacy of three oral drugs — bedaquiline, pretomanid and linezolid — in 109 patients (57 males and 56 females were HIV positive) with extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB) and multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) showed encouraging results — treatment success rate was 90%.

The favourable results for Tuberculosis held true regardless of the HIV status of the patients.

Tuberculosis

  • Tuberculosis (TB) is an infectious disease usually caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB) bacteria.
  • Tuberculosis generally affects the lungs, but can also affect other parts of the body.
  • Most infections do not have symptoms, in which case it is known as latent tuberculosis.
  • The bacteria that cause TB are spread when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
  • In 15–20% of active cases, the infection spreads outside the lungs, causing other kinds of TB.

What is Multi drug resistance?

  • Multiple drug resistance (MDR), multidrug resistance or multi-resistance is antimicrobial resistance shown by a species of microorganism to multiple antimicrobial drugs.
  • The types most threatening to public health are MDR bacteria that resist multiple antibiotics; other types include MDR viruses, parasites (resistant to multiple antifungal, antiviral, and antiparasitic drugs of a wide chemical variety).
  • Recognizing different degrees of MDR, the terms extensively drug resistant (XDR) and pandrug-resistant (PDR) have been introduced.



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