A treatment used to fight Extreme Drug Resistant tuberculosis which was trialled in Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg, has been approved.Picture: Karin Schermbrucker/AP
Cape Town - A treatment used to fight Extreme Drug Resistant tuberculosis (XDR TB), which was trialled in Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg, has been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration this week.

The trial - nicknamed Nix-TB - started in April 2015 and was conducted by the New York-based NGO TB Alliance, with Brooklyn Chest Hospital, King Dinuzulu Hospital Complex and Sizwe Tropical Diseases Hospital taking part.

“At total of 109 patients took part in the trial, 57 from the Brooklyn Chest Hospital in Ysterplaat in Cape Town. The treatment takes place over six months, not the usual 18-month treatment for XDR TB,” said chief executive of TASK Applied Science, Professor Andreas Diacon, local principal investigator for the trial in Cape Town.

The new treatment consists of a three-drug regimen of bedaquiline, linezolid and a new drug called pretomanid, developed by TB Alliance.

“Previously, treatment for XDR TB would consist of a patient taking more than 20 tablets a day and an injection. The new regimen, nicknamed BPal for short, will be better tolerated,” said Diacon. 

@TheCapeArgus

[email protected]

Cape Argus