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Good News! New Drugs BPaMZ, BPaL May Offer Fast Tuberculosis Treatment

Mar 10, 2017 06:15 AM EST
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Researchers from TB Allience have generated two new drugs that will drastically lessen the treatment period of tuberculosis patients.
(Photo : Paula Bronstein/Getty Images)

Scientists may have finally cracked the code for faster tuberculosis treatment. Researchers from TB Alliance will be offering two different drugs, which they have been researching for some time. The said drugs shows high effectivity in healing the disease.

Mel Spigelman, president of TB Alliance, said the drugs are called BPaMZ and BPaL. According to New Scientist, BPaMZ only requires patients to take four drugs a day while BPaL requires patients to take three drugs a day.

Usually, it takes around six months of drug treatment to cure TB, and up to two years for those whose bodies resist the drugs. However, this process is expensive as patients may not only have injections but take up to 20 drugs a day.

Trials on BPaMZ showed that of 240 people across 10 countries in Africa, ordinary TB can be cured in four months and drug-resistant TB in six months. As for BPaL, it has so far cured 40 out of 69 patients with drug-resistant TB in just six months.

These drugs have been highly awaited due to their ability to dramatically decrease the healing time of TB at a low cost. In fact, New Scientist notes that these drugs may only be retailed at $300 -- a tenth of the $3,000 present cost of drug-resistant TB treatments.

Of course, Spigelman acknowledges that there are larger tests to be taken in order to fully confirm the effectiveness of BPaMZ and BPaL. In order to fully test their efficiency, an estimated of three years is needed for extensive study.

According to the World Health Organization's Global Tuberculosis Report, tuberculosis remains a global threat as it continues to spread. Unfortunately, not a lot of people get adequate treatment for the disease.

As of 2015, of 580,000 people diagnosed with the disease, only a fifth received existing therapy. Sadly, 250,000 of the diagnosed patients also died. Half of these cases were from China, India and Russia.

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