On the last day of 2012, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the first new tuberculosis drug in over 40 years! The drug, to be called Sirturo but also known as bedaquiline, is the first in a new class of drugs that aims to treat the drug-resistant strain of the disease. It can be used when other drugs fail.
This news comes at a time when multi-drug resistant (MDR) cases of TB are multiplying worldwide, and public health officials desperately need better drugs to combat these dangerous strains.
Watch this space for our further analysis on what next steps must be taken for this important new drug to reach the people who need it most. Also, check out our video interview with a South African doctor treated with bedaquiline, and find out what opinion leaders around the globe are already saying about the announcement.
And finally, for our infographic friday, USAID shows the path to TB innovation of which bedaquiline is a part.