This application requests support for a Keystone Symposia meeting entitled Drug Resistance and Persistence in Tuberculosis, organized by Ann M. Ginsberg and John D. McKinney, which will be held in Kampala, Uganda from May 13-18, 2012. According to the World Health Organization, over 25% of new tuberculosis cases in some sub-national regions are MDR-TB and, as of March 2010, 58 countries had reported XDR-TB (TB resistant to the major classes of both first- and second-line drugs). The Keystone Symposia meeting on Drug Resistance and Persistence in Tuberculosis aims to bring together basic and clinical researchers and public health experts from diverse backgrounds to explore the following: 1) the fundamental biology underlying genetic and phenotypic drug-resistance in TB;2) progress in expanding capacity in high burden settings to perform drug susceptibility testing;3) identification of novel drug target;4) innovative strategies for drug discovery;and 5) advances in developing multidrug regimens that will be effective against currently drug- resistant as well as drug-sensitive strains of M. tuberculosis. Investigators from outside the TB field will be included to provide new perspectives and stimulate fresh approaches for tackling this global public health priority.
In 2009 there were 9.4 million new cases of active tuberculosis (TB) and 1.7 million deaths due to TB. According to the World Health Organization, one-third of the world's population is currently infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the bacterium that causes tuberculosis, and five to ten percent of those infected will develop active TB at some point in their lives. The Keystone Symposia meeting on Drug Resistance and Persistence in Tuberculosis aims to bring together basic and clinical researchers and public health experts from diverse backgrounds to explore gaps in our knowledge and current capacity that are key to successfully meeting the challenge of overcoming TB drug resistance globally.