The Centre for Tuberculosis Research (CTBR) at UBC is dedicated to the development of novel therapeutics to curb the effects of the most devastating infectious agent of mortality worldwide, Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb). The Centre brings together researchers from the Faculty of Medicine (in the departments of Medicine, Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology) with colleagues from the Faculty of Science (in the department of Microbiology and Immunology). The creation of the Centre allows these researchers to collaborate with each other, build upon each other’s strengths, exchange ideas and data across disciplines and create a stimulating training environment for graduate students and postdocs. The development and optimization of novel anti-bacterials is facilitated through working with the Centre for Drug Research and Development (CDRD).
Vision: To promote cutting-edge collaborative opportunities in the disciplines of microbiology, biochemistry, immunology and chemistry to better understand biological systems that can be used as targets for new drugs for tuberculosis chemotherapy.
Mission: 1. To understand the scientific basis of Mtb’s prevalence, including its inherent resistance to antibiotics and its unusual ability to persist in the host. 2. To develop and optimize novel anti-bacterials that target Mtb.
Selected current projects:
1. Identification of new potential drug combinations to overcome the intrinsic resistance of M. tuberculosis.
2. Identification of M. tuberculosis enzymes that degrade cholesterol - a major nutrient source during infection.
3. Characterization of M. tuberculosis signalling proteins that disrupt host function.
The CTBR is financed in part by a Team Start-up Award from the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research (MSFHR).