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Anti-tuberculosis drug

Dr Jan Rybniker, University Hospital Cologne; Prof. Stewart Cole, EPFL



Tuberculosis resulting from infection with Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) is a serious global health problem accounting for 1.4 million deaths in 2011. A major reason for the high morbidity and mortality caused by Mtb is the long duration of therapy and increasing multidrug-resistance of Mtb strains.

Mtb has been treated with combination therapy for over fifty years. Yet according to the latest WHO statistics, approximately half a million new cases of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis are diagnosed every year. Of these, it is estimated that approximately 40,000 have extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis.

In view of these numbers, there is a medical need for new anti-Mtb compound to overcome resistance to known drugs in patients.


The inventors were able to demonstrate that lansoprazole and derivatives thereof exhibit growth inhibiting properties against intracellular Mtb. In particular, it has been proven that the reduced form lansoprazole sulfide is the active moiety. Yet, lansoprazole is not metabolized in a sufficient amount to serve as a prodrug. Thus, the inventors propose lansoprazole sulfide as a new drug to treat Mtb infections.

Commercial Opportunity

On behalf of University of Cologne, PROvendis offers access to rights for commercial use as well as the opportunity for further co-development.

Development Status

Efficacy has been proven in-vitro and in a mouse model of Mtb infection.

Patent Situation

Patents have been filed for EP and USA based on WO 2016/120259 A1.

Further Reading

Rybniker et al.: “Lansoprazole is an antituberculous prodrug targeting cytochrome bc1”, Nat Commun. 2015 Jul 9; 6:7659


Anti-tuberculosis drug

General formula of benzimidazole sulfide derivatives for the treatment of Mtb infections