Top News in R&D





 Global Health Technologies Coalition 


R&D News Roundup: November 20, 2023


Top News in R&D

TB Alliance launches five-country phase 2 clinical trial evaluating next-generation TB drug
TB Alliance press release (11/16)

TB Alliance has launched a new pan-phase 2 clinical trial to evaluate the safety and efficacy of replacing bedaquiline with a new experimental compound, TBAJ-876, in the organization’s three-drug BPaL regimen. The new regimen, composed of novel compounds with minimal pre-existing resistance, could provide a method to treat all patients with active tuberculosis (TB), including drug-sensitive and drug-resistant TB, with a universal treatment that is shorter, simpler, and more people-friendly than current regimens. Results from the preclinical and phase 2 studies showed that TBAJ-876, compared to bedaquiline, eliminated TB bacteria faster and was potentially safer. The study aims to enroll 300 participants with drug-sensitive TB at 21 trial sites in Georgia, the Philippines, South Africa, Tanzania, and Uganda.

No more needles? Gates Foundation funds patch-style vaccine technology
Reuters (11/16), features the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Last week, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation announced a $23.6 million grant to US-based life science company Micron Biomedical to fund the first-ever mass production of needle-free vaccine technology. The technology, which uses dissolvable microneedles attached to the skin via a patch-like device, has the potential to boost the uptake of a variety of injectables, particularly in low-income countries, because it is simpler to transport and easier to administer. Specifically, the funding will support the development of a manufacturing facility that can make around 10 million doses annually for large clinical trials and hopefully wider use, subject to approval from regulatory authorities.

Study: Common antibiotic reduces risk of drug-resistant tuberculosis
Devex (11/16)

A phase 3 clinical trial in South Africa found that a widely available oral antibiotic, levofloxacin, was safe and substantially reduced the risk of children and adults developing multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB). The trial is the first high-quality study to look at a preventive treatment for MDR-TB in children—there are currently no preventive MDR-TB treatments for adults or children. The researchers hope the new results will lead to updated guidelines from the World Health Organization that will lead to the rapid scale-up of levofloxacin because the drug is already widely available and relatively affordable, with child-friendly formulations already available through procurement agencies.



News from GHTC

High cure rate with drug-resistant TB regimen: Results of operational research in Central and Southeast Asia
TB Alliance press release (11/15)

Collaboration to improve the quality of in vivo antibiotics testing (11/14), features the Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria Biopharmaceutical Accelerator

GARDP innovating global antimicrobial research
FEBS Network (11/14), features the Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative and the Global Antibiotic Research & Development Partnership (GARDP)



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