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Free Content Implications of the current tuberculosis treatment landscape for future regimen change

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BACKGROUND: The current tuberculosis (TB) treatment landscape has been studied extensively, but researchers rarely consider how it creates challenges or opportunities for future regimen change.

METHODS: In 166 stakeholder interviews in the TB high-burden countries (HBCs), we investigated areas of first-line TB treatment and control that would affect, and be affected by, a future TB regimen change. Responses were compared with existing standardized data.

RESULTS: Public sector regimens are converging towards a single standard, which facilitates comparison with a single control arm from clinical trials. However, final product design is challenging if the goal is fixed-dose combinations and patient kits, whose current widespread use addresses continuing weaknesses in drug management. Any product must address broad groups, as relatively low levels of drug susceptibility testing (DST) do not allow for individualized therapy. Finally, the protection of new drugs from the development of resistance will be challenging, as the implementation of directly observed therapy and public-private mix programs is incomplete, and substantial private sectors have been identified as early adopters of these drugs.

CONCLUSIONS: Health systems for TB treatment and control must be improved not only to allow better implementation of current treatments but also to set the stage for implementation of new, improved TB regimens.
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Keywords: high-burden countries; regimen change; tuberculosis drugs

Document Type: Regular Paper

Affiliations: 1: Global Alliance for TB Drug Development, New York, New York, USA 2: Management Sciences for Health, Arlington, Virginia, USA 3: Global Alliance for TB Drug Development, New York, New York, USA; and RESULTS USA, Washington, DC, USA 4: Global Alliance for TB Drug Development, New York, New York, USA; and Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation, Geneva, Switzerland

Publication date: June 1, 2011

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  • The International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease publishes articles on all aspects of lung health, including public health-related issues such as training programmes, cost-benefit analysis, legislation, epidemiology, intervention studies and health systems research. The IJTLD is dedicated to the continuing education of physicians and health personnel and the dissemination of information on tuberculosis and lung health world-wide.

    Certain IJTLD articles are selected for translation into French, Spanish, Chinese or Russian. They are available on the Union website

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