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Rapid diagnostic test and shorter, cheaper treatment signal new hope for multidrug-resistant tuberculosis patients

New WHO recommendations will speed detection and improve treatment of multidrug resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) through use of a new rapid diagnostic test and a shorter, cheaper treatment regimen. The novel diagnostic test, called MTBDRsl, is a DNA-based test that identifies genetic mutations in MDR-TB strains. At less than US$ 1000 per patient, the new treatment regimen can be completed in 9–12 months.