Pain drug 'effective against TB'

11 September 2012

A drug used to treat pain could be effective when it comes to treating resistant tuberculosis, it has been announced.

Research published in the journal PNAS revealed that a cheap off-patent anti-inflammatory drug could kill both replicating and non-replicating drug resistant tuberculosis in the laboratory.

This is an achievement that few currently approved drugs tackling TB can reach. Furthermore, resistance to already-established drugs is spreading.

Weill Cornell's Dr Carl Nathan said: "This agent might help save lives if there was a way to test it in TB patients."

However, researchers have voiced concerns that the effective drug, called oxyphenbutazone, may never be tested in clinical trials for TB.

"No drug firm will pay for clinical trials if they don't expect to make a profit on the agent. And that would be the case for an off-patent drug that people can buy over the counter for pain in most of the world," explained Dr Nathan.

Posted by Edward Bartel

Health News is provided by Adfero in collaboration with Spire Healthcare. Please note that all copy above is ©Adfero Ltd. and does not reflect views or opinions of Spire Healthcare unless explicitly stated. Additional comments on the page from individual Spire consultants do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of other consultants or Spire Healthcare.


Find a treatment, test or scan available at:


Find a consultant

Use one or more of the options below to search for a consultant and link through to view their Spire profile.


Let us help you

fill out this form and we will get back to you:

Please select a hospital

We can call you

Please enter your details below and we will call you back.

What is the aim of your enquiry?

Please select a hospital

If we are unable to reach you by phone, please include your email address so that we can get in touch...



© Spire Healthcare Group plc (2016)