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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, entited “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 newcases are reported each year. Even though most of these cases are in the developing world, the author states “ tuberculosis’s 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, 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.

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

To download or request a PDF copy of the article, please visit the website of Nature Nature Reviews Microbiology at www.nature.com


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



   
  
 
  07.23.14   NYTimes.com: C.D.C. Says Lab Director Behind Anthrax Mishap Resigns
  07.21.14   Medindia Report: Cocktail of Drugs Shortens Time Taken to Treat TB Patients
  07.21.14   CIDRAP Report: West Africa Ebola outbreak total tops 1,000
  07.19.14   NYTimes.com: Pathogen Mishaps Rise as Regulators Stay Clear
  07.16.14   American Biological Safety Association (ABSA) Response to Recent Events at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): download press release
  07.11.14   The Washington Post: CDC says it improperly sent dangerous pathogens in five incidents in past decade
  07.10.14   Global Biodefense: Over 50 Million Children Infected with TB
  07.08.14   New York Times: Forgotten Vials of Smallpox Found in Storage Room
  06.18.14   CDC Newsroom: CDC Lab Determines Possible Anthrax Exposures: Staff Provided Antibiotics/Monitoring

Note from Rutgers Environmental Health and Safety Office

At Rutgers University, strict protocols are in place in terms of the materials that are brought outside of the containment facilities for select agents and other pathogens. Many procedures require that materials be inactivated and then downgraded from biosafety level three (BSL3) to biosafety level two (BSL2) for further processing or analysis. Before researchers can do this, they must write a standard operating procedure (SOP) and explain the method by which they will remove samples from the facility. This SOP is written only after the main project has been approved by the Institutional Biosafety Committee. Before the SOP is finalize and approved, data documenting the inactivation of samples must be included with the final version of the SOP and approved by our BSL3 Risk Assessment Committee. The committee reviewing these procedures include senior researchers, laboratory administration and the biosafety officer/ Responsible Official. Additionally, every time samples are brought out of BSL3, the BSL3 Manager is notified.

  06.15.14   NBCNews.com: Whooping Cough Officially Epidemic in California, says Public Health Department


 
  07.24.14   From July 19 to 23, the NAACP Annual Convention was held in Las Vegas, NV. During this convention, the 2014 NAACP ACT-SO Awards Show took place. This year, over 600 NAACP youth from around the country participated in ACT-SO. The program included 26 categories of competition in the sciences, humanities, business, and performing and visual arts. Demetrius Beckman, a PHRI Summer 2013 Intern from Newark, NJ, was awarded the silver medal (out of 19 finalists) in the category Medicine and Health. Demetrius worked at PHRI with Drs. Xilin Zhao and Muhammed Malik, and his project title was “Effect of transcription complex facilitators on lethal stress.” More information on the convention can be found at www.naacp.org
    
  07.11.14   Dr. David Perlin comments on a recent article in the New York Times entitled "Crack Down on Scientific Fraudsters" by saying "Scientific misconduct is a zero tolerance issue for PHRI and Rutgers. It violates the public trust and it undermines all professional scientists who toil long hours, often in obscurity, to benefit society."

To read the original New York Times article, click here.
    


 


 


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