NIAID seeks latent TB/HIV co-infection study proposals

The U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases recently announced that it is accepting grant applications for research into the microbiology of latent tuberculosis infection with an added focus on HIV co-infection.

NIAID, which is part of the U.S. National Institutes of Health, said that the mechanisms of latency are not properly understood. Latent TB infections occur when the bacterium Mycobacterium tuberculosis stays within the host, but without showing active symptoms of the illness.

Latent TB can potentially cause active TB, and rates of this occurring increase approximately ten percent in those with HIV co-infection.

"Applications are encouraged both from investigators new to this area of research, with promising (even if few) preliminary data as well as from investigators interested in innovatively expanding current LTBI efforts to include HIV-infected populations and development of improved and relevant animal models," the NIAID recently announced.

Potential investigators are encouraged to use NIAID resources whenever needed and to take advantage of existing clinical research cohorts and specimens.

The NIAID said that it will grant support to studies that could lead to the development of new assays and other strategies aimed at measuring latent TB infection and identifying the potential for reactivation in those also suffering from HIV co-infection.

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