PARIS: Africa, India and other developing countries are awash in fake or sub-standard drugs for tuberculosis, fuelling the rise of treatment-resistant strains of TB, according to a survey published today.
Investigators in the United States asked local people in 19 cities in 17 countries to purchase isoniazid and rifampicin, the frontline antibiotics for TB, from a private-sector pharmacy.
The samples were then examined by chromatography, a technique that detects chemical signature, for their active ingredient.
They were also tested for disintegration, to see if they properly broke up in water at body temperature within 30 minutes.
Out of 713 samples, 9.1 percent failed these basic quality control tests, according to the probe, published in the International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease.