World Tuberculosis Day on March 24th

When Robert Koch announced in 1882 that he had discovered the cause of tuberculosis, he laid the cornerstone for the combat against the plague. On the occasion of his announcement, March 24th has annually been observed as World-TB-Day. Hence, neither the disease must be forgotten nor the determined efforts to fight against it, because the danger is not averted yet. The WHO global TB report says that there were an estimated 10.0 million new TB cases worldwide in 2017: 5.8 million men, 3.2 million women and 1.0 million children. Eight countries accounted for two thirds of all new cases: India, China, Indonesia, the Philippines, Pakistan, Nigeria, Bangladesh and South Africa. In 2017, 1.3 million died of TB. Thus, TB remains one of the top 10 leading causes of death worldwide.

Furthermore, drug-resistant TB continues to be a public health crisis. In 2017, there were an estimated 558.000 new cases of TB with a resistance to rifampicin, the  most  effective  first-line drug, and of these, 82% had multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB). They mainly occurred in India, China and the Russian Federation. In addition, the average proportion of MDR-TB cases with XDR-TB was 8.5%. XDR-TB is defined as MDR-TB plus resistance to at least one fluoroquinolone and a second-line injectable agent.

It is questionable whether Koch could have foreseen these developments in his time. At that time, TB has been endemic in Europe and America and almost every fourth person died of the disease. Although due to improved living conditions, hygiene and treatment methods the situation nowadays has sagnificantly improved, TB still remains the world’s deadliest infectious killer.

As a diagnostics manufacturer, we actively participate in the global fight against TB. We develop new and innovative diagnostics for the detection of TB bacteria and their antibiotic drug resistances. Our mycobacteria products are routinely used in many laboratories all over the world. And as a matter of fact, the use of our DST tests, GenoType MTBDRplus and GenoType MTBDRsl, has been officially recommended by the WHO. 
Our motivation is to help affected persons. That’s why we continuously improve our diagnostics.

Find out more about our comprehensive mycobacteria product series.