Scientists find new compond that can kill drug resistant TB

An international team led by scientists at The Scripps Research Institute, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University announced on Monday they have found a new anti-TB compound.

The findings showed how this compound can effectively kill drug resistant strains of TB. The compound, known as TCA1, was found to kill both replicating and non-replicating strains of TB.

"In cell cultures and in mice, this compound showed powerful activity against ordinary active TB bacteria, non-replicating TB bacteria and even extensively drug-resistant TB strains," Feng Wang, a member of the Schultz lab at TSRI and first author of the study, said.

Tuberculosis is a common infectious disease cause by various strains of mycobacteria. Tuberculosis usually attacks the lungs, but it also known to attack other parts of the body as well. It is spread by coughing and sneezing.

Tuberculosis is one of the world's leading causes of death. In 2010, almost 9 million cases of TB were reported worldwide.

Recent issues, like public health complacency and immunity-weakening HIV, have helped TB flourish.

"These findings represent an effort to help solve one of the major global health crises of our time-the resurgence of TB and its dangerous drug-resistant strains," Peter G. Schultz, the Scripps family chair professor of chemistry at TSRI, said.