Tuesday October 15, 2019

Aspirin Can Help to Fight Against Tuberculosis, Says Study

India has the world's highest burden of TB, with 27 per cent of all global cases and over 30 per cent of all deaths worldwide

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Aspirin, Ovarian cancer
New ingestible, expanding pill to track ulcers, stomach cancer.

Aspirin can prevent the tuberculosis (TB) bacterium from hijacking immune cells and allow the body to control infection better, say researchers who found that the common pain killer could treat the top infectious killer worldwide that claims around 4,400 lives a day.

Researchers from the Centenary Institute in Sydney found that the TB bacterium hijacks platelets from the body’s blood clotting system to weaken immune systems.

“Our study provides more crucial evidence that widely available aspirin could be used to treat patients with severe TB infection and save lives,” said lead author Elinor Hortle, research officer at Centenary.

Using the zebrafish model of TB, the team used fluorescent microscopy to observe the build-up of clots and activation of platelets around sites of infection.

They found that the platelets were being tricked by the infection into getting in the way of the body’s immune system.

Treating the infections with anti-platelet drugs, including the widely available aspirin, the researchers said, could prevent hijacking and allow the body to control infection better, according to the paper published in The Journal of Infectious Diseases.

Aspirin
Aspirin may lower risk of ovarian cancer as well. Pixabay

“This is the first time that platelets have been found to worsen TB in an animal model. It opens up the possibility that anti-platelet drugs could be used to help the immune system fight off drug resistant TB,” Hortle said.

According to the World Health Organization, TB is one of the top 10 causes of death worldwide.

In 2017, 10 million people fell ill with TB, and 1.6 million died from the disease (including 0.3 million among people with HIV).

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The infection also accounted for death in 230,000 children (including children with HIV associated TB) in 2017.

India has the world’s highest burden of TB, with 27 per cent of all global cases and over 30 per cent of all deaths worldwide. (IANS)

Next Story

New Vaccine for Tuberculosis Shows Promise

Two peptides (small proteins), which are normally found in tuberculosis bacteria, were synthesised and then bound extremely tightly to an adjuvant (a stimulant) that was able to kick-start the immune response in the lungs

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World, Population, Tuberculosis
The study, published in European Respiratory Journal, shows that one in four people in the world carries tuberculosis bacterium in the body. Pixabay

Researchers have successfully developed and tested a new type of vaccine targeting tuberculosis (TB).

Published in the Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, the early-stage vaccine was shown to provide substantial protection against TB in a pre-clinical laboratory setting.

“Tuberculosis is a huge world-wide health problem. It’s caused by a bacteria that infects the lungs after it’s inhaled, is contagious and results in approximately 1.6 million deaths per year globally,” said study co-author Anneliese Ashhurst, who is affiliated with both the Centenary Institute and the University of Sydney.

The research programme targeting the deadly disease took over five years of effort to be implemented.

FILE – A tuberculosis patient receives treatment at a clinic in Jakarta, Indonesia. VOA

A team of scientists created the advanced synthetic TB vaccine and have now demonstrated its effectiveness using mouse models.

Two peptides (small proteins), which are normally found in tuberculosis bacteria, were synthesised and then bound extremely tightly to an adjuvant (a stimulant) that was able to kick-start the immune response in the lungs.

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“We were then able to show that when this vaccine was inhaled into the lungs, it stimulated the type of T cells known to protect against TB. Importantly, we then demonstrated that this type of vaccine could successfully protect against experimental airborne TB infection,” Ashhurst said.

“The important thing is that the vaccine actually gets to the lungs because that’s where you first see TB. Ultimately, we would love to see a form of this vaccine available for use in an easily inhaled nasal spray which would provide life-long TB protections,” said researcher Warwick Britton. (IANS)