Johnson & Johnson’s Makes a Big TB Commitment to USAID

Johnson & Johnson has a huge "family" of companies and its latest commitment to tuberculosis seems more aligned with the corporate philanthropy of a major pharmaceutical company, but then again, Johnson & Johnson is affiliated with few of those as well. In this case, we’re taking about Janssen Therapeutics.  

Janssen Therapeutics focuses most of its energies on developing new virology therapeutics. Though the company does pay attention to what it refers to as ‘other’ infectious diseases, its predominate research and development revolves around HIV and hepatitis C. We should note that Janssen has its own corporate giving program for HIV and hep C projects. We should also note that hep C and tuberculosis are common co-infections to HIV, so Johnson & Johnson making a commitment valued at $30 million on Janssen’s behalf makes sense.

Related: Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies Foundation: Grants for Global Development

Janssen and Johnson & Johnson have pledged to donate $30 million worth of the drug Sirturo (bedaquiline) to USAID over the next four years. The commitment will allow USAID to distribute Sirturo to over 100 low and middle income countries at little or no cost. Incidentally, after receiving a fast-track designation, Sirtuo received FDA approval in 2012 under its accelerated approval program. Bedaquiline was among the first new classes of antibiotics approved by the FDA in close to five decades.

USAID is hoping that Johnson & Johnson’s latest commitment will spur further innovations in other global public health crises in which the status quo approach is no longer a viable solution.

Related: Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies Foundation: Grants for Global Health

Johnson & Johnson's "family" includes around 250 companies. Like Jannssen, many of those affiliates and subsidiaries have their own giving programs. Johnson & Johnson's main philanthropic arm gives generously to global health and development projects as well as sexual and reproductive health programs.