The Union Welcomes Preliminary Results of New TB Vaccine Clinical Trial

Primary results of a clinical trial into a new tuberculosis (TB) vaccine, sponsored by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and conducted in partnership with Aeras, were published today, 25 September, in the New England Journal of Medicine.

GSK and Aeras reported that GSK’s M72/AS01E candidate vaccine significantly reduced the incidence of pulmonary tuberculosis disease in HIV-negative adults with latent tuberculosis infection in an ongoing phase IIb clinical trial testing. These primary results demonstrate an overall vaccine efficacy of 54 percent, with varied response rates observed in different demographic sub-groups.

“The preliminary results from the ongoing phase IIb clinical trial of GSK’s M72/AS01E candidate Tuberculosis (TB) vaccine are a major milestone in the development of a new TB vaccine,” said Dr Paula I Fujiwara, Scientific Director for the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease (The Union).

“They come at a critical moment as world leaders meet at the United Nations in New York, tomorrow, Wednesday 26 September, to chart a path toward ending the TB epidemic.

“Leaders have committed to ending the global TB epidemic by 2030, and we need a new TB vaccine to have a shot at meeting that goal. Relative to other major killers, TB gets a pittance of research funding. We have a US$ 1.2 million gap between annual, worldwide TB research funding and what’s needed. National leaders should interpret these new vaccine data as reason to double down on their research investments. The great thing is they’re committing to do exactly that at the UN this week. Now they need to follow through,” concluded Fujiwara.