DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Tuberculosis (TB) is still a major killer in the world today. Accurate and timely diagnosis of TB is widely recognized as a pillar of control programs worldwide because it is the first, necessary step toward timely treatment and decreased transmission. Till recently, century-old, often inaccurate methods have been the mainstay of diagnosis of active disease and latent infection. Recent effort has resulted in new immunologic tests for latent infection. Neither old nor new tests, however, can detect progression from latent infection to active disease, a crucial stage for treatment and infection control. The conference on "Immunodiagnosis of tuberculosis: new questions, new tools" to be held in September 2008 will discuss the most recent findings in the biology of Mycobacterium tuberculosis and of the host immune response that are most relevant to the identification of immune markers specific for each stage of infection (latent infection, progression, and disease). It will also review the status of field studies and clinical trials that can be utilized for identification of immune markers and discuss cutting-edge technologies that can favor development of assay formats amenable to use in diverse settings. Particular attention will be given to pediatric TB, which poses unique diagnostic challenges. With the world-class quality of its diverse speaker roster and its structure of plenary and poster sessions, the meeting will encourage discussion and foster collaboration among scientists in basic research, translational research, field studies and industry. Because of a renewed interest for TB diagnosis expressed by academia industry, and governmental and non- governmental agencies, this meeting can be viewed as a fundamental step towards establishing partnerships and consortia leading to the next generation of TB immunodiagnostics. To ensure a diverse pool of participants, efforts will be made to include minorities and funding will be provided to support the participation of junior investigators. The specific aims of the conference are: (1) To discuss current knowledge and to identify existing gaps and future research directions towards identifying immune markers of latent and progressive M. tuberculosis infection and active disease through a review of the metabolism and physiology of M. tuberculosis in relation to bacterial antigen expression and of stage-specific host immune responses to M. tuberculosis infection; (2) To discuss on-going and future field studies for identification of immune markers and evaluation of diagnostic tests; (3) To discuss the unique aspects of pediatric TB and the challenges of its diagnosis; (4) To identify novel technologies leading to detection of immune markers by assaying formats amenable to use in settings with varied resource levels; and (5) To publish meeting reports and reviews of the research areas discussed, so that the benefits derived from the meeting be disseminated to a wider audience. Tuberculosis (TB) is still a major killer in the world: one person dies from TB every 15 seconds. It is widely recognized that accurate and timely diagnosis of TB is a pillar of control programs worldwide because it is the first, necessary step toward timely treatment and decreased transmission. The conference on "Immunodiagnosis of tuberculosis: new questions, new tools" can be viewed as a fundamental step towards establishing partnerships and consortia leading to the next generation of tuberculosis immunodiagnostics.
|Effective start/end date||3/15/08 → 10/31/08|
- National Institutes of Health: $15,000.00
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)