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International Research Team Selected to Establish an International Coordinating Center for Tuberculosis Research

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International Research Team Selected to Establish an International Coordinating Center for Tuberculosis Research

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

International collaborative research teams are critical to fighting a global disease like tuberculosis (TB). The World Health Organization reports that TB is the leading infectious cause of death worldwide. In 2018 alone, an estimated 10 million people were diagnosed with TB and 1.5 million died.

To assist in global efforts to better prevent, diagnose, and treat tuberculosis (TB), and particularly in the context of HIV, CRDF Global has partnered with the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) since 2012 on the Regional Prospective Observational Research for Tuberculosis (RePORT) program. The RePORT program is a global network of scientists and investigators leading clinical and laboratory TB research in China, Brazil, South Africa, India, Indonesia, and the Philippines, with the goal of addressing local and global research priorities.

This year, CRDF Global is pleased to announce winners of a research competition for establishing a RePORT International Coordinating Center (RICC) among the RePORT country cohorts. The RICC will facilitate multi-regional research in TB/ HIV between existing RePORT networks and standardize data analysis and sharing across cohorts.

The winning team’s leadership and principal investigators represent Rutgers University, Johns Hopkins University, Vanderbilt University, and the Foundation for Scientific and Technological Development in Health in Brazil. The total award value is $1M per year for 3 years.

“Since the start of the RePORT program, we have seen some significant research contributions come out of the program. The RICC has the potential to make life-saving research and findings more easily accessible to health communities in regions with a high burden of TB, where it is needed the most. CRDF Global is excited to continue supporting this global TB network of researchers, in their commitment to ending TB,” said Christopher Maxwell, program manager for global health at CRDF Global.  

“As principal investigator, I am excited by the talented group (representative of RePORTs Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Philippines, and South Africa)  to direct and channel our efforts to focus on research questions on tuberculosis that can best (or only) be addressed by our consortium.  We will address research areas such as the epidemiology and biomarkers for adverse TB treatment outcomes (treatment failure, relapse and death) and at the same issue across diverse human and bacterial populations.  It also is our goal to become engaged in studies and trials of new diagnostics, treatments, and vaccines,” said Dr. Jerrold Ellner, adjunct professor at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School.