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  World TB Day Symposium: Countdown to 2015

KochTuberculosis (TB) is a curable infection that, by all rights, should be a disease of the past. However, despite Koch's discovery of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) over 100 years ago, Mtb infects a third of the world's population and tragically remains the leading cause of death due to a bacterial infection, claiming the lives of nearly 1.3 million people in 2012. In 2013, the World Health Organization issued a report that highlighted both progress and delays associated with the United Nations Millennium Development Goals for TB control issued in 2001. This past March 24, in honor of World TB day, The New York Academy of Sciences sponsored a symposium in their New York City headquarters that discussed progress in reaching the 2015 goals and explored regional efforts that are generating scientific insights and driving the development of novel diagnostic, therapeutic and vaccine-related tools. Several PHRI colleagues presented research at the symposium, including Dr. G. Marcela Rodriguez, assistant professor, and Dr. Natalie Bruiners, a postdoctoral fellow, who works with Dr. Maria Gennaro, both of whom spoke. Dr. Liana Tsenova, assistant professor, and Dr. Ruchi Pandey, a postdoctoral fellow with Dr. Rodriguez, presented posters. There was also a combined photo & video display of TB in the world, entitled ’The Human face of TB”, created by the eminent photographer Misha Friedman that was sponsored by PHRI.

A history on Tuberculosis research at PHRI can be read in the following PDF document

Friedman Video
The Human Face of TB: An Unnecessary Pandemic.
Misha Friedman has been documenting the life and treatment of patients with various forms of tuberculosis, including forms non-treatable, throughout the Former Soviet Union, the United States and South Africa. Officials from health organizations say the global TB epidemic is not slowing down. Though the settings in those countries are very different, they have one thing in common – TB can devastate the lives of patients, often leaving them without hope. To view the video, click on the image or follow this link.

To view a photo series "Tuberculosis in the Former Soviet Union" by Misha Friedman, please visit http://mishafriedman.viewbook.com

The March Issue of the Lancet described Misha Friedman's work, and a PDF copy of the article can be downloaded.

A recent article in the New York Times OP-ED section of the Wednesday, July 9, 2014 edition, entitled “If Tuberculosis Spreads…”, discusses the rise in drug resistant tuberculosis through out the world. The article, by Polly Price, a law professor at Emory University, describes the problems in dealing with this epidemic, in which 500,000 new cases are reported each year. Even though most of these cases are in the developing world, the author states “Tuberculosis’ greatest lesson is that the health problems of poor people in poor areas are everyone’s problem. Continuing our present failing system would prove to be far more expensive in the end, because drug-resistant tuberculosis will not obey political or economic boundaries”.

To read the complete editorial, follow the link to www.nytimes.com

Paper Highlight

The Path of Anti-Tuberculosis Drugs: From Blood to Lesions to Mycobacterial Cells

For the successful treatment of pulmonary tuberculosis (TB), drugs need to penetrate complex lung lesions and permeate the mycobacterial cell wall in order to reach their cellular targets. However, most currently used anti-tuberculosis drugs were introduced into clinical use without considering the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic (PK/PD) properties that influence drug distribution, and this has contributed to the long duration and limited success of current therapies. Dr. Veronique Dartois, a PHRI faculty member, is an internationally recognized expert in studying the PK/PD of anti-tuberculosis drugs. Dr. Dartois has written a review on this important area of research, entitled “The path of anti-tuberculosis drugs: from blood to lesions to mycobacterial cells” that recently appeared in Nature Reviews Microbiology (volume 12 March 2014 pp. 159-167). In this article, Dr. Dartois describes new methods to quantify and image drug distribution in infected lung tissue and in mycobacterial cells, and she explores how this technology could be used to design optimized multidrug regimens. To download or request a PDF copy of the article, please visit the web site of Nature Nature Reviews Microbiology at www.nature.com

Dr. Dartois has demonstrated that the distribution of antibiotics in the lesions of TB infected individuals is not uniform. In another review, in press, entitled “Heterogeneity in tuberculosis pathology, microenvironments and therapeutic reponses”, she and her co-authors present evidence that the prevailing view which claims that all TB induced lesions in an individual react similarly to the systemic immune response and to antibiotic therapies is not valid. In fact, host pathogen interactions within lesions are a dynamic process and result in a spectrum of TB lesions in each infected individual. This new paradigm will be helpful to TB researchers who are studying the pathogenesis of tuberculosis and its treatment. To download a PDF copy of the article, please follow this link.

Dr. Véronique Dartois is Associate Professor at PHRI and the department of Medicine at the New Jersey Medical School, Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey

Faculty Positions Infectious Diseases Research

The Public Health Research Institute (PHRI) of New Jersey Medical School - Rutgers University located in Newark, New Jersey, is recruiting a new faculty member at the middle or senior levels to join a growing group of 23 laboratories. PHRI is a leading infectious diseases research center that emphasizes basic and translational sciences. Candidates must have training and experience of the highest quality, and a NIH funded research program addressing critical questions in cell biology, immunology and molecular biology that offer novel insights into pathogenicity, as well as innovative approaches for new vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics. The PHRI Center is housed in a state of the art research facility that has extensive core services, including nationally designated BL3 laboratory and animal facilities, X-ray facility for structural studies and applied genomics center. The PHRI Center offers a robust and highly collegial research environment, generous start-up funds, and a comprehensive benefits package. Candidates should submit a curriculum vitae, a statement of research interests and accomplishments and a list of at least three references.

Any questions or applications should be sent to: Dr. Issar Smith, Public Health Research Institute, Rutgers, New Jersey Medical School, 225 Warren Street, Newark, NJ 07103. Telephone: (973) 854-3260. Fax: (973) 854-3101. Email: smithis@njms.rutgers.edu

Please note that effective July 1, 2013, as a result of the New Jersey Medical and Health Sciences Restructuring Act, several units from the former University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ) are now part of Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences (RBHS). For the purposes of payroll and benefits administration, the above position is a legacy UMDNJ position at Rutgers, and is eligible for benefits associated with legacy UMDNJ positions.

The PHRI is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

To download a PDF copy of this employment opportunity advertisement, which appeared in the February 7, 2014, issue of Science click here

  02.24.15   Gaffi Report: Fungal disease Deaths- only $30 per patient would give major reduction in AIDS globally
  01.29.15   BBC News: Ebola outbreak: Virus mutating, scientists warn
  01.14.15   CDC Report: Progress Being Made in Infection Control in U.S. Hospitals; Continued Improvements Needed
  01.03.15   Modernhealthcare.com Report: FDA drug approvals reached 18-year high in 2014
  12.30.14   BBC Health News: First Ebola boy likely infected by playing in bat tree
  12.12.14   PMLiVE News: Antibiotic resistance to lead to millions of deaths

  02.19.15   In an interview for the National Public Radio, David Perlin, executive director of PHRI, discusses the recent Carbapenem-resistant enterobacteriaceae (or CRE) outbreak in California. To read the interview, visit NPR News: Why California's Superbug Outbreak Isn't As Scary As It Seems
  02.17.15   This month's Paper Highlights features a publication from Drs. Bushkin, Pine, Gennaro and Tyagi on the detection of M. Tuberculosis specific T cells by single molecule-fluorescence in situ hybridization followed by flow cytometry (FISH-Flow). For details, please visit PHRI Paper Highlights
  11.28.14   In the current issue of Lab Manager, the research of David Perlin was highlighted. Follow the link to read "Fighting the Resistance"



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