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Eur Respir J. 2013 Sep;42(3):785-801. doi: 10.1183/09031936.00205512. Epub 2013 Feb 8.

Old ideas to innovate tuberculosis control: preventive treatment to achieve elimination.

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  • 1University Medical Hospital Schleswig-Holstein, Member of the German Center for Lung Research, DZL, Kiel.


The introduction of new rapid diagnostic tools for tuberculosis (TB) and the promising TB drugs pipeline together with the development of a new World Health Organization Strategy post 2015 allows new discussions on how to direct TB control. The European Respiratory Society's European Forum for TB Innovation was created to stimulate discussion on how to best take advantage of old and new opportunities, and advances, to improve TB control and eventually progress towards the elimination of TB. While TB control is aimed at reducing the incidence of TB by early diagnosis and treatment of infectious cases of TB, TB elimination requires focus on sterilising the pool of latently infected individuals, from which future TB cases would be generated. This manuscript describes the three core components that are necessary to implement the elimination strategy fully. 1) Improve diagnosis of latent TB infected individuals. 2) Improve regimens to treat latent TB infection. 3) ensure public health commitment to make both 1) and 2) possible. Old and new evidence is critically described, focusing on the European commitment to reach elimination and on the innovative experiences and best practices available.

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