Cholesterol-lowering drugs may work against typhoid

Salmonella typhi / Wikipedia

Medical researchers and pharmaceutical companies are constantly looking for new uses for existing and proven medications, but it's likely no one saw this coming: cholesterol-lowering drugs might also work against typhoid and other infectious diseases, according to a new study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Why it matters: There are more than 21 million cases of typhoid fever every year, killing more than 200,000 people annually — mostly in countries with poor sanitation and limited access to clean water. "The findings raise the intriguing possibility that cholesterol-lowering drugs, combined with vaccines, might help protect against typhoid," the researchers wrote.