An analysis of eight-week data from a clinical trial of a tuberculosis treatment regimen shows the promise of curing the disease in a shorter period of time, at a fraction of the current cost, and with no need for painful injections, researchers at the International AIDS Conference in Melbourne, Australia said Monday.
They were announcing some of the first results of an international study spanning eight sites with more than 200 participants, of a treatment regimen consisting of two new TB drug candidates and one that is part of existing tuberculosis treatment. The regimen which previously showed promising results in laboratory trials is intended for patients with both drug-sensitive and drug-resistant tuberculosis, as well as for patients who are co-infected with HIV.
The PaMZ regimen (short for the regimen’s three drugs: PA-824, moxifloxacin and pyrazinamide, the last of which is now used in first-line tuberculosis treatment) could shorten treatment for drug-resistant strains of tuberculosis from two years to six months, researchers have said.
The trial enrolled 186 patients whose tuberculosis was drug-sensitive, and 26 patients with multidrug-resistant tuberculosis. The results announced by the TB Alliance Monday showed that the regimen acted against tuberculosis bacteria in patients from two weeks through two months, with “significantly greater” effectivness than the current standard regimen against drug-sensitive tuberculosis.