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View Diary: Vitamin C kills drug resistant TB in lab (39 comments)

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  •  Interpret with caution, support excellent research (3+ / 0-)
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    vcmvo2, erush1345, gnosticator

    I'd love to see improvements in our treatment of TB and other infectious diseases. But I've been in clinical research for many years, and of the approaches that looked promising in the lab, far more failed than succeeded when tested in people. So I view this with great caution.

    The other reason for caution is that there is great diversity in how people - and bacteria - behave. So what works for one person, or one infection, might not work for another. There is a big push now for "personalized medicine" - making use, for example, of genetics or gene expression to figure out what drives these differences and how to exploit them to target treatment.

    You should know, however, that NIH is deeply committed to finding effective treatments for TB, and they are quite happy to try approaches that will be cheap or free. The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) does high-quality best-practice clinical trials to provide definitive evidence about alternative approaches (double-blind randomized clinical trials, for example, where possible). The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) is the main group doing research on TB. NIH is not driven by the profit motive, and they are very mindful of health disparities.  

    So if you really want to have answers to whether this or other promising approaches will work in actual clinical practice, you should support more funding for NIH, instead of the budget cuts they have suffered in last 10 years or so.

    •  You're right! (2+ / 0-)
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      Laurel in CA, gnosticator

      The NIH is a jewel and should receive much better funding.

      They saved my daughter's life with their research - they are a dedicated group of scientists and physicians. There is no profit there and they labor long hours.

      In our sleep, pain which cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart until, in our own despair, comes wisdom through the awful grace of God ~RFK

      by vcmvo2 on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:34:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  So glad for you and your daughter (1+ / 0-)
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        I'm so glad they were able to help - the folks there are truly dedicated, and bright. I've worked with many over the years and have found virtually all of them impressive.

        Thanks for your words of support for NIH, and may they reach the ears of those who control the budget!

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