AstraZeneca became the newest member of a $22 million multi-member partnership to find new therapies for tuberculosis. The current remedies for the disease have been in use for over 50 years, and require several months or years of treatment. But with the expertise and help of companies including AZ and Sanofi-aventis, and academic partners University of Cambridge and institutions in Pavia, Italy and Uppsala, Sweden, the group hopes to cut treatment time.
Researchers will work in London and Norwich, U.K.; Russia; India and South Africa to find 10 to 20 TB treatment candidates that will be narrowed down to two to three final drugs for TB patients. "We're confident we can replicate that and come up with two candidates," said Stewart Cole, a TB expert and leader of the consortium from the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne.