Vitamins and TB
The main objective of this large study is to determine whether six months of daily micronutrient supplementation with combined zinc, vitamin A and vitamin D protects household contacts of those with active, infectious TB from themselves contracting TB. Micronutrients or a placebo are consumed for six months following exposure to the initial case. Monitoring of secondary cases of TB continued for the duration of the study.
Over three years, our team has identified and visited 1,802 households in which a patient with sputum microscopy-positive pulmonary tuberculosis was diagnosed by our collaborators in the Peruvian National TB program. Interim results have already provided important public health discoveries concerning determinants of TB susceptibility and transmission from patients to contacts, demonstrating statistically and biologically significant effects of these micronutrients in the enhancement of antimycobacterial immunity.
Several of our groundbreaking findings have the potential for important practical application and we are working towards translating them into application in resource-poor communities.