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Team Members:
  • Anjana Sinha
  • Hiren Mistry
  • Anmol Chopra
  • Hector Neira
  • Devin O’Brien-Coon
  • Gyanu Lammichane, PhD
  • Yukari Manabe, MD
  • Stacie Stender, RN
  • Center for Tuberculosis Research Laboratory
  • Jhpiego


Globally, only 60,000 of the estimated 310,000 new cases of Multi-Drug Resistant Tuberculosis (MDR- TB) are diagnosed. The situation is even more dismal in the 27 nations that account for 80% of MDR-TB cases, where less than 5% of patients receive an official diagnosis. MDR-TB diagnostics are typically available only at reference level facilities, two or three level above where patients actually seek treatment. Clinicians are therefore forced to “treat” these patients with highly ineffective drugs for at least six months, prior to modifying treatment. In the meantime, patients are likely to become increasingly resistant to treatment, and able to spread this airborne infection within their community. Progression of MDR-TB cases into extensively drug resistant (XDR-TB) cases is a major public health concern because XDR-TB strains are virtually untreatable. Our team is developing a self-contained assay comprising effective, yet inexpensive components, to bring the gold standard of care, culture-based diagnosis, to rural healthcare facilities. User-centric design is being employed to assure the final system enables minimally trained personnel to conduct MDR-TB testing safely, without sophisticated laboratory equipment. Expanding availability of MDR-TB diagnostics to rural health facilities will lead to adequate treatment for patients, while they are still responsive to available drugs.

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