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Accelerated Development of New Treatment for Multi Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis: TB Alliance and Tibotec Announce Unique Partnership to Develop TMC207

SEATTLE, June 17 /PRNewswire/ --

    When:    Wednesday, June 17, 2009, 10:30am Eastern (9:30am Central; 8:30am
             Mountain; 7:30am Pacific)

    Dial-in: 1-877-879-6184 (toll-free)
             1-719-325-4759 (local access)
             Conference Title: TB Alliance/Tibotec Briefing
             Participant passcode: 2895940

    Where:   Pacific Health Summit
             Bell Harbor International Conference Center
             Pacific Board Room
             Seattle, Washington

Today at the Pacific Health Summit, the Global Alliance for TB Drug Development (TB Alliance) and Tibotec announced a unique partnership to accelerate multi drug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) drug development. The two organizations will work together to develop TMC207, which is currently being studied in Phase II clinical trials in patients with MDR-TB. TMC207 could become the first tuberculosis treatment in 40 years to feature a new mechanism of action against the disease. Novel drugs are urgently needed to fight deadly MDR-TB, which caused an estimated 130,000 deaths worldwide in 2007.

        Mel Spigelman, M.D., president and CEO, Global Alliance for TB Drug
        Paul Stoffels, M.D., Global Head Pharmaceutical Research and
         Development, Johnson & Johnson
        Jaime N. Bayona, M.D., M.P.H., director, Socios En Salud (Partners
         In Health) Lima, Peru


Interim data from an ongoing Phase II study of TMC207 were recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine. In the placebo-controlled study of 47 patients with MDR-TB, it was found that 48 percent of patients receiving TMC207 in combination with standard treatment converted to negative sputum culture after eight weeks compared with 9 percent of those who received placebo and standard treatment. The safety and efficacy of TMC207 will be further evaluated in Phase 3 clinical trials.

Tuberculosis kills one person approximately every twenty seconds. MDR-TB, which is characterized by resistance to at least two of the most powerful medicines in today's standard, four-drug regimen for drug-susceptible TB, is of particular concern given the rapid rise in the number of cases throughout the world and the difficulties in treating it. There were an estimated 510,000 incident cases and 130,000 fatalities due to MDR-TB in 2007. Drug-resistant strains are extremely difficult and expensive to treat and novel drugs are urgently needed to fight these deadly strains.

Dr. Mel Spigelman, the president and CEO of the TB Alliance, and Dr. Paul Stoffels, Global Head Pharmaceutical Research and Development, Johnson & Johnson, will discuss this landmark partnership. Dr. Jaime Bayona, M.D., director and founder of Socios En Salud, Lima, Peru, was integral in helping Paul Famer, M.D., Ph.D., establish a pilot MDR-TB treatment program clinic in Peru. As an authority on approaches to the control of MDR-TB, Dr. Bayona can speak first-hand to the urgent need for novel treatments for MDR-TB.


Joanna Breitstein, Global Alliance for TB Drug Development, +1 917-361-0683,

Karen Manson, Tibotec, +32-479-89-47-99,

Sarah Bailey, GCI Health, +1 212-537-8291,

SOURCE TB Alliance; Tibotec
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