The CBTBR is one of nine Centres of Excellence created through the National Research and Development Strategy of the South African government. The Department of Science and Technology (DST) are implementing the centres under the guidance of the National Research Foundation (NRF) of South Africa.
The NRF website comments that "It is envisaged that such centres will stimulate sustained distinction in research while simultaneously generating highly qualified human resource capacity in order to impact meaningfully on key national and global areas of knowledge."
The CBTBR, Centre of Excellence for Biomedical Tuberculosis (TB) Research, was established in July 2004 and signifies the governments commitment in finding solutions to one of the continents most threatening diseases.
Internationally acclaimed TB research has been done at both the University of Stellenbosch (Division of Molecular Biology and Human Genetics) and the University of the Witwatersrand (Molecular Mycobacteriology Research Unit) and by creating the CBTBR the two research laboratories combined their efforts to understand Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the bacterium causing tuberculosis in humans. In January 2011 the CBTBR was expanded to include a third node at the University of Cape Town.