World TB Day 2010 – A Call to Arms

Today marks World TB day 2010, 128 years to the day Dr. Robert Koch discovered the bacillus M. tuberculosis.

TB impact

A recent WHO report indicated that approximately 1.8 M people died from TB in 2008, while multi-drug resistance was on the rise.  The Stop TB Partnership has set a goal to halve TB prevalence and deaths by 2015 (compared to 1990).

The Financial Times has posted a series of video interviews today on the subject of combating TB.

Early stage preclinical TB research continues as we have seen with the many groups CDD is currently supporting.

These are the biggest challenges we see for this research community:

  1. Availability of funding for continued drug discovery screening initiatives.
  2. Coordination of activities to prevent groups from covering the same ground (e.g. which compounds have been tested  under what conditions, etc.)
  3. Drug discovery expertise to take a hit to a lead, and then to the clinic and keep the pipeline flowing.
  4. Engagement of big pharma to help – Access to ADME/Tox models and tools to rapidly evaluate compound quality as early as possible in the pipeline.
  5. Increase efficiency of drug discovery process using rational design and learn from data already produced.

We hope to see advances in these areas over the next year, and CDD is committed to help the TB and neglected disease community make it happen!