The second edition of the popular TBScience pre-conference, an official event entirely devoted to basic and translational tuberculosis (TB) research, welcomed twice the number of participants from last year. Science presented focused on prevention, new diagnostics, treatment and transmission.
More than 800 participants convened over the course of the two days for a variety of sessions, symposia, poster sessions and working groups, showcasing and discussing extraordinary science.
The pre-conference event opened with the release of study results showing that a new vaccine elicited an immune response and provided protection against progression to pulmonary TB disease for at least three years – a major breakthrough for TB, which has been treated with the same vaccine for nearly a century.
Speaking at the opening TBScience press conference, Dr Ann Ginsberg from the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative said: “For the first time in a century, the world has a new TB vaccine candidate with sustained efficacy against pulmonary TB disease.”
At the press conference, Diptendu Bhattacharya, a TB survivor who was forced to quit his studies as a consequence of contracting TB said he had been “left shell shocked and helpless” by the disease, and that he hoped the future would focus not only on new treatment, but also prevention.