FDA approves 1st new tuberculosis drug in 40 years


WASHINGTON (AP) — The Food and Drug Administration says it has approved a Johnson & Johnson tuberculosis drug that is the first new medicine to fight the deadly infection in more than four decades.

The agency approved J&J’s pill, Sirturo, for use with other older drugs to fight hard-to-treat tuberculosis.

Sirturo is the first medicine specifically designed for treating multi-drug-resistant tuberculosis. That’s an increasingly common form of the disease that cannot be treated with at least two of the four primary antibiotics used to treat tuberculosis.


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The standard drugs used to fight the disease were developed in the 1950s and 1960s.

Roughly one-third of the world’s population is estimated to be infected with the bacteria causing tuberculosis.

© 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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