Third WHO report on neglected tropical diseases
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Crystal Pellet
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Message 1964 - Posted: 19 Feb 2015, 13:23:33 UTC


The presence, or absence, of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) can be seen
as a proxy for poverty and for the success of interventions aimed at
reducing poverty.
Today, coverage of the public-health interventions recommended by the World
Health Organization (WHO) against NTDs may be interpreted as a proxy for
universal health coverage and shared prosperity – in short, a proxy for
coverage against neglect.

As the world’s focus shifts from development to sustainable development,
from poverty eradication to shared prosperity, and from disease-specific
goals to universal health coverage, control of NTDs will assume an important
role towards the target of achieving universal health coverage, including
individual financial risk protection. Success in overcoming NTDs is a
“litmus test” for universal health coverage against NTDs in endemic

The first WHO report on NTDs (2010) set the scene by presenting the evidence
for how these interventions had produced results. The second report (2013)
assessed the progress made in deploying them and detailed the obstacles to
their implementation. This third report analyses for the first time the
investments needed to achieve the scale up of implementation required to
achieve the targets of the WHO Roadmap on NTDs and universal coverage
against NTDs.

presents an investment strategy for NTDs and analyses the specific
investment case for prevention, control, elimination and eradication of 12
of the 17 NTDs. Such an analysis is justified following the adoption by the
Sixty-sixth World Health Assembly in 2013 of resolution WHA6612 on neglected
tropical diseases, which called for sufficient and predictable funding to
achieve the Roadmap’s targets and sustain control efforts.

The report cautions, however, that it is wise investment and not investment
alone that will yield success.

The report registers progress and challenges and signals those that lie
ahead. Climate change is expected to increase the spread of several vector-
borne NTDs, notably dengue, transmission of which is directly influenced by
temperature, rainfall, relative humidity and climate variability primarily
through their effects on the vector. Investments in vector-borne diseases
will avoid the potentially catastrophic expenditures associated with their
control. The presence of NTDs will thereby signal an early warning system
for climate-sensitive diseases.

The ultimate goal is to deliver enhanced and equitable interventions to the
most marginalized populations in the context of a changing public-health and
investment landscape to ensure that all peoples affected by NTDs have an
opportunity to lead healthier and wealthier lives.

Full report

Profile Ben
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Message 1972 - Posted: 19 Feb 2015, 20:24:18 UTC - in response to Message 1964.

Very interesting, thank you :)

Need some time to read this huge report though.

Ant Chubb
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Message 2007 - Posted: 24 Feb 2015, 11:40:53 UTC - in response to Message 1964.

Wow! Thanks for that, Crystal. Nice to have a flag to rally behind. Hopefully this project will make some progress towards solving problem of developing novel antimicrobial agents in the 17 NTDs.


Buruli ulcer
Chagas disease
Dracunculiasis (guinea-worm disease)
Endemic treponematoses
Foodborne trematodiases
Human African trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness)
Lymphatic filariasis
Onchocerciasis (river blindness)
Soil-transmitted helminthiases
Taeniasis and (neuro)cysticercosis

Chris Granger
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Message 2034 - Posted: 26 Feb 2015, 6:18:27 UTC - in response to Message 2007.

World Community Grid has completed projects that dealt with Dengue, Leishmaniases, and Schistosomiasis, though I'm not sure if research papers have been published with results yet. Perhaps it'd help to coordinate with WCG?

Ant Chubb
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Message 2041 - Posted: 27 Feb 2015, 10:59:31 UTC - in response to Message 2034.

Thanks Chris. Good point. Will connect in before moving forward on those.


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Message 2044 - Posted: 27 Feb 2015, 16:25:32 UTC - in response to Message 2041.
Last modified: 27 Feb 2015, 16:32:21 UTC

Your list is long. :O

Only for Dengue I found 20k results in Nucleotides (NCBI)
72k for EST...

It will be (not) funny. ;)

About the Dengue Project:

Our initial FEB calculations, using an early version of the CHARMM code, produced an unacceptable number of incomplete (i.e failed) calculations when tested on a large scale with World Community Grid. This problem was traced to instabilities in the molecular dynamics simulations associated with fixed boundary conditions being selected for variable-sized ligands. To correct this problem, we ported the latest version of the CHARMM code from charmm-gui to World Community Grid, modified the automated boundary parameter selection routine to accommodate large ligands, and improved the accuracy of the stereochemical parametrization of bound ligands.

To test the robustness and accuracy of these FEB calculation code enhancements, we selected co-crystal structures for eight very different proteins in the Protein Data Bank. Each ligand-protein complex had highly accurate binding data from microcalorimetry experiments. Our new code and associated optimized parameter set produced stable molecular dynamics simulations for the eight tested ligand-protein systems. Moreover, component energy terms extracted from molecular dynamic simulations converged during the timescale of the simulation and were highly reproducible for multiple replicate calculations. Finally, calculated FEB values were in good agreement with experimental measurements (e.g., for the AmpC protein, the calculated FEB was -8.0±2.5 kcal/mol while the experimental binding energy was measured as -8.2 kcal/mol).

Now that we have a robust and stable code, with parameters that generate molecular dynamics simulations with reproducible energy convergence, we will re-examine Phase 1 results to better discriminate between false positive and true positive hits.

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