Tuberculosis is a major healthcare issue, causing 1,7 million deaths and 9 million new causes of death every year. One third of the world's population is considered to be affected, whereas only 60% of cases are detected. The care of this disease is made even more complex and difficult by the development of multi-resistant strains and co-infections with the HIV / AIDS virus. Most developing countries do not have the sufficient means to conduct rigorous and sustained epidemiological surveys.
2008 saw the implementation of rapid multi-resistant tuberculosis detection techniques within Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory. The techniques were evaluated beforehand by the Foundation's teams. These tests represent major healthcare stakes in that the monitoring programmes set up in emerging countries are faced with frequently insufficient infrastructures and equipment, which results in a low detection of cases of tuberculosis, in turn favoring the circulation and expansion of multi-resistant strains.