UF researchers study TB epidemic

Mar 21, 2006

University of Florida and Indian scientists are studying a protein they believe might help protect against tuberculosis and give patients an easier recovery.

The scientists say alcohol consumption likely reduces the amount of the protective protein called heme oxygenase 1 and that weakens the body's defenses against TB, said Dr. Veena Antony, a UF professor of pulmonary medicine.

She says researchers hope to pinpoint the role of alcoholism in the global epidemic by studying a population of HIV- and tuberculosis-infected patients in India. The scientists are collecting data for a project funded by the National Institutes of Health and hope to have answers within two to three years, Antony said.

TB currently kills someone every six seconds around the world, she said.

The epidemic is currently more prevalent in resource-poor nations such as India. But with immigrants unknowingly carrying bacteria that cause TB into the United States each year, the crisis could spread to U.S. soil if left untended, Antony warned.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Everglades trail surveyed for cultural artifacts

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Comet Siding Spring whizzes past Mars

4 hours ago

A comet the size of a small mountain whizzed past Mars on Sunday, dazzling space enthusiasts with the once-in-a-million-years encounter.

Major breakthrough could help detoxify pollutants

8 hours ago

Scientists at The University of Manchester hope a major breakthrough could lead to more effective methods for detoxifying dangerous pollutants like PCBs and dioxins. The result is a culmination of 15 years of research and ...

Recommended for you

Secrets of dinosaur ecology found in fragile amber

19 hours ago

Ryan McKellar's research sounds like it was plucked from Jurassic Park: he studies pieces of amber found buried with dinosaur skeletons. But rather than re-creating dinosaurs, McKellar uses the tiny pieces ...

User comments : 0