Nonprofit Drug Maker Produces TB Antibiotic After Private Companies Won’t

August 23, 2019

(PBS News Hour) – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s approval of a new tuberculosis antibiotic this month could be a significant win not only for TB patients, but for a burgeoning nonprofit model for developing prescription drugs. Tuberculosis kills about 1.6 million people per year worldwide, and drug-resistant strains of the disease are becoming more common, making it difficult to treat. The new antibiotic, called pretomanid and developed by the nonprofit TB Alliance, achieved a 90 percent success rate among patients with highly drug-resistant forms of TB who took the antibiotic as part of a three-drug, all-oral regimen over a six month period.