Breathing freely over TB patient

Officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are likely taking a collective sigh of relief. This just in from The Scientist intern Kelly Chi: Today (July 3) representatives from the National Jewish Medical Research Center and the CDC revealed that Andrew Speaker, a patient who sparked international concern after traveling with a highly-resistant form of TB, has multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB), not extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB). This means that he can be treated with a

By | July 3, 2007

Officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are likely taking a collective sigh of relief. This just in from The Scientist intern Kelly Chi: Today (July 3) representatives from the National Jewish Medical Research Center and the CDC revealed that Andrew Speaker, a patient who sparked international concern after traveling with a highly-resistant form of TB, has multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB), not extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB). This means that he can be treated with a fluoroquinolone or other injectable drugs that would have not been effective against XDR-TB. The first test was conducted by the CDC using a subculture of Speaker's sputum and resulted in an XDR-TB diagnosis. The mycobacteriology laboratory at National Jewish subsequently tested sputum samples taken from Speaker on three separate occasions: April 25 in Atlanta, May 27 in New York, and June 1 in Denver. All tests have revealed MDR-TB, using multiple cultures, multiple ways. However, Mitchell Cohen, director of the Coordinating Center for Infectious Diseases at the CDC, told reporters the public health response would have remained the same even if Speaker had MDR-TB. Robert Cooksey, Speaker's father-in-law who linkurl:works with TB;http://www.the-scientist.com/news/display/53295/ at the CDC, was not involved in any of the tests, Cohen said. The CDC is still determining whether any of the exposed persons have TB.

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