TB today: Tackling the disease in London

24 March 2010

UCL today marks World TB Day with the symposium: ‘The challenge of TB: UCL’s contribution’.

TB

The event commemorates the date in 1882 when Dr Robert Koch announced the discovery of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the bacterium that causes tuberculosis (TB).

Hosted by the UCL Institute for Global Health, the event will provide an opportunity to describe problems and solutions related to the TB pandemic and to support worldwide TB control efforts. It will showcase TB and global health work from a range of UCL disciplines and feature presentations from leading academics in the field. The event is now fully booked, but a waiting list is open at the booking page above.

Dr Marc Lipman (UCL Medicine) will give one of the plenary sessions, entitled ‘What's going on with TB in London and the UK?’

In this podcast, Dr Lipman discusses the challenges of tackling the disease in London, its development over time and why TB is still prevalent today.

Professor Alimuddin Zumla (UCL Centre for Infectious Diseases and International Health) has marked World TB Day this year with a co-authored editorial in the South African Medical Journal. The researchers reflect on the paradoxical fact that, although effective and cheap therapy has been available for over 60 years, TB kills nearly 1.8 million people every year, which equates to 5,000 people every day. The authors note that together with HIV/AIDS and malaria, TB remains one of the most important causes of death from infectious diseases worldwide, and that eradicating the disease in sub-Saharan Africa requires effective and committed partnerships between the West and the developing world.

Professor Zumla and UCL colleagues also published a study in January 2010 in the International Journal of Gynaecology & Obstetrics that discussed the accumulating evidence that TB associated with HIV/AIDS, malaria, sepsis, and other opportunistic infections are the main infectious causes of maternal deaths in sub-Saharan Africa. The authors noted that maternal deaths from tuberculosis are now on the rise in the UK, and advised due diligence and watchful surveillance in European prenatal services.

To find out more about the event and publications, follow the links above.

Image: Detail of TB


UCL context

The UCL Division of Medicine has as its mission: the performance of innovative, high-quality biomedical research; excellence in undergraduate and graduate teaching; and exemplary patient care. This is accomplished through a series of specialised Research Departments, each working under a Head of Department whose aim is to bring research and clinical scholars into productive collaborations.

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