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Antibiotic resistance genes identified in TB

An analysis of more than 10,000 Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacterial isolates from 23 countries has revealed new genes associated with resistance to 13 first- and second-line new and repurposed antibiotics.

In one paper, the researchers outlined how they assembled an open-access data compendium of 12,289 M. tuberculosis isolates, processed in CRyPTIC partner laboratories around the world.

Each isolate was sequenced, and then tested on a high-throughput grid with varying concentrations of 13 antimicrobials. Of the samples included in the compendium, 6814 were resistant to at least one drug, including 4685 samples resistant to multiple drugs or to the first-line treatment rifampicin.

In a second paper, the consortium presented their findings from a genome-wide association study (GWAS) using the data on 10,228 M. tuberculosis isolates.

For all 13 drugs, the group discovered uncatalogued variants associated with significant increases in the minimum inhibitory concentration – the lowest concentration of an antibiotic that stops the growth of M. tuberculosis.

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