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National Center for Tuberculosis and Lung Disease (NCTBLD)

NCTBLD, Tbilisi, Georgia, is a head facility for TB control in Georgia, which creates, implements and administers the National Tuberculosis Program. The Program’s aim is to decrease spreading of Tuberculosis in Georgia. The main activities of the Center includes: i. Administration of National Tuberculosis Program, ii. Provision of high quality TB diagnosis, iii. Treatment of TB patients, iv. Prevention of Tuberculosis, v. biomedical research.

The following types of services can be obtained in the Center:
i. Diagnosis
ii.Treatment - Conservative and Surgical
iii.Examination and prevention of TB patients’ family members

The National Center for TB and Lung Diseases consists of: 
  • Four inpatient departments
  • Department for Thoracic surgery
  • Extrapulmonary TB department
  • Children's department
  • X-ray service
The following laboratories are operating at NCTBLD: i. National Reference Laboratory (NRL) serves as a reference biosurveillance laboratory for whole region and provides opportunity for high quality biomedical research at national and International level.  ii. General microbiology. iii. Immunology. iv. Biochemistry  v. Cytology and pathomorphology. vi. Molecular biology, vii. Clinical laboratory.

NCTBLD laboratory is equipped with technologies, including:
  • Cell culture laboratory
  • PCR technologies
  • ELISA assay
The NCTBLD is in the process of implementation of RFLP assay. 
The NCTBLD possesses the mycobacterium culture collection. 
The staff of the NCTBLD consists of highly skilled professionals: physicians, surgeons, laboratory workers, scientists.

The NCTBLD  is actively collaborating with:

WHO - World Health Organization;
Emory University
Harvard University
GFATM - Global Fund against AIDS, TB and Malaria
USAID/MSCI - Madical Service Corporation International
GOPA/KFW – German Governement
ICRC - International Committee of Red Cross
MSF - Medecins Sans Frontieres
KNCV - KNCV Tuberculosis Foundation, Netherlands
The National Center is in close contacts with other countries in the region (Azerbaijan, Armenia) and has a potential of conducting joint, multi site studies.
CRDF - Civillian Research and Development Fund

Completed and ongoing projects at NCTBLD:

Project Title 
Funding Agency
 1997-1999 Clinical and Molecular epidemiology of TB in the Republic of Georgia  CRDF
 2000-2001 Clinical and Molecular epidemiology of drug-resistant TB in Georgia  CRDF
 2001-2003 Clinical and Molecular epidemiology of drug-resistant TB in Georgia and the Caucasus  ISTC/BTEP
 2004  Multiple-Drug Resistant Tuberculosis: Epidemiologic, Diagnostic, and Therapeutic Research Opportunities  CRDF
 2004-2007 Development of multiple drug resistant tuberculosis (MDRTB) surveillance and National TB program(NTP) evaluations republic of Armenia and Georgia  ISTC/BTEP
 2006-2008 Determination of susceptibility to some second-line drug of Mycobacterium tuberculosis strains isolated in the Republic of Georgia CRDF
 2006-2008 Characterization of M.tuberculosis gene expression patterns during growth in the human lung  CRDF
 2006-2008 Monitoring chemotherapy regimen efficacy by Mycobacterium tuberculosis mRNA detecting in sputum specimens  CRDF
 2007 Role of Hepatitis C virus as a risk factor for Anti-tuberculosis drug induced hepatotoxicity  CRDF
 2007 Prevalence and Risk Factors for Extensively Drug Resistant TB (XDR-TB): A Population Based Study National Institutes of Health/Fogarty International Center
 2007 Prevalence and Risk factors for latent Tuberculosis infections among health care workers in Georgia  National Institutes of Health/Fogarty International Center
 2008 Prevalence and risk factors for extensively drug resistant tuberculosis (XDR TB) and evaluation of the GenoType MTBDRplus assay for rifampin and isoniazid susceptibility rapid testing in a population based study in Tbilisi, country of Georgia Emory Global Health Institute/CRDF
 2008 Impact of Vitamin D Supplementation on Host Immunity to Mycobacterium tuberculosis and Response to Treatment: Building Translational Research Capacity in Nutrition and Infectious Diseases in the Republic of Georgia   
Emory Global Health institute
Selection of appropriate treatment and infection control measures by integrated high throughput genotyping and drug resistance determination of M.tuberculosis clinical isolates WOTO

Collaborative Research Interests of NCRLD with NIH/NIAID

1. Genotyping of MDR and XDR MTB cultures isolated in Georgia.
2. Extrapulmonary tuberculosis.
3. MDR-contacts.
4. HIV - co-infection.
5. Polyclonal TB.
6. Study general bacterial pool of cavity in cavitary TB cases.
7. Elaboration and implementation of rapid and effective diagnostic tools in pediatric TB. Differential diagnosis of TB meningitis in children and study of mixed pulmonary/extrapulmonary TB cases.
8. Study of TB drug-resistance dynamics in new and retreatment cases. 
9. Study of resistance to so-called 3rd line drugs.
10. Study of human genetic markers during TB disease.
12. Create a new form of anti-tuberculosis drugs (ATD) complex on the basis of nanoparticles produced from the new type of  biodegradable polymers, calculated at a specific phase of the standard treatment regimen for single-introducing it into the body of the patient and the subsequent controlled drug releasing in order to reduce the side effects of medicines .
13. TB phages- Development of isolation and application methods for Treatment and Prevention of Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis
14. Investigation of Electrochemical Lysis application opportunities for use in resistant tuberculosis treatment
15. Monitoring of M.bovis and M.avium paratuberculosis in cattle and poultry.

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