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Fighting neglected tropical diseases
One billion people suffer from debilitating communicable diseases, affecting almost exclusively developing countries.1
Sanofi has been actively engaged in the fight against these “neglected” tropical diseases since 2001 alongside the WHO, with a $5 million a year contribution including financial support and medicines donations.
Thanks to this partnership with the WHO, 30 million people have been screened for sleeping sickness and over 180,000 patients have been diagnosed and treated for this disease, which is fatal if left untreated;2. However, most of the current treatments are given by infusion and require hospitalization. For this reason, Sanofi, in partnership with the Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi), is developing a new oral treatment for sleeping sickness. All these initiatives aim to eliminate the disease by 20203.
Each year, 1.3 million new cases of leishmaniasis and 20,000 to 30,000 deaths due to the disease are reported. This parasitic disease transmitted by the bite of a sand fly, causes skin lesions and severe disability4.
In Brazil, Sanofi produces a drug against leishmaniasis which is provided at a preferential price in developing countries. More than 6 million doses have been distributed in 20145. Today it is administered by injection only, but our teams are working to develop a new formulation for skin application.
Over 120 million people are currently infected by lymphatic filariasis (or elephantiasis), with about 40 million people disfigured and incapacitated by the disease6.
Sanofi, in partenerhsip with the Japanese firm Eisai and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, donated 120 million tablets of diethylcarbamazine citrate (DEC) in 2012 and 2013, which has enabled the WHO to provide mass drug administration for 30 million people.
Within the framework of its partnership with the WHO, Sanofi also contributes to:
- Developing epidemiological monitoring and research to find new treatments for Chagas disease, a parasitic infection that affects 6 to 7 million people worldwide7.
- Improving access to care and facilitating earlier, simplified treatment for Buruli ulcer, a skin and soft tissue infection that is particularly debilitating. In 2014, 2200 new cases were reported to the WHO . When the disease is treated early, 80% of patients can be cured8.
For more information:
- WHO, “Working to overcome the global impact of neglected tropical diseases,” First WHO report on neglected tropical diseases, 2011.
- WHO data, May 2015
- WHO, Accelerating work to overcome the global impact of neglected tropical diseases, 2012
- WHO, Media Center, Leishmaniasis Fact sheet No. 375, February 2015
- Internal data, May 2015
- WHO, Media Center, Lymphatic filariasis Fact sheet No. 102, May 2015
- WHO, Media Center, Chagas disease Fact sheet No. 340, March 2015
- WHO, Media Center, Buruli ulcer Fact sheet No. 199, May 2015
October 10, 2015
September 30, 2015
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