I have seen LF in the flesh. You see patients who quickly become social outcasts because of the grotesque appearance of their limbs and the like. It moves you - Jean-Pierre Garnier
image by: Uniting to Combat NTDs
In the 1970s, William Campbell and Satoshi Ōmura discovered a class of drugs called avermectins that have helped to control two of the world’s most debilitating tropical diseases: lymphatic filariasis and onchocerciasis. For their efforts, they were jointly awarded the 2015 Nobel Prize for Physiology and Medicine this week.
But even while the duo are being justly lauded for their work, the diseases they have helped to control still affect more than 150 million people around the world. And the drugs they discovered have arguably reached the limits of their abilities, thanks to a critical limitation that other scientists are now trying to get around.
Lymphatic filariasis is caused…
Don’t go after the parasitic worms that cause the diseases; go after the bacteria that those worms depend on.
The mission of the Global Alliance to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis is to bring together a diverse group of public-private health partners to support the Global Programme to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis by mobilising political, financial and technical resources to ensure success.
Lymphatic filariasis results from parasitic worms that are transmitted by the bites of mosquitoes in tropical and subtropical regions of the world. Several species of mosquitoes can transmit the disease.
Lymphatic filariasis (referred to as LF and also known as elephantiasis) is a mosquito-borne disease that is caused by parasitic filarial nematodes. Though infection usually is acquired in childhood, the grotesquely disfiguring effects of LF is greatest in adults.
Lymphatic filariasis is a parasitic disease caused by thread-like worms called Wuchereria bancrofti. The parasite is carried from person to person by mosquitoes. 120 million people are infected in subtropical and tropical Asia (mostly in India), Africa, the Pacific and the Americas (mostly in Brazil, Haiti, Guyana and the Dominican Republic).
People with the disease can suffer from lymphedema and elephantiasis and in men, swelling of the scrotum, called hydrocele. Lymphatic filariasis is a leading cause of permanent disability worldwide. Communities frequently shun and reject women and men disfigured by the disease. Affected people frequently are unable to work because of their disability, and this harms their families and their communities.
Progressively increasing doses of any one of the major anti-parasiticide drugs is the treatment for the disorder. Among these drugs are: ivermectin, albendazole, and diethylcarbamazine. These drugs work to get rid of the larval worm, to inhiobit reproduction of the adult worm, or to kill the adult worm.
Filariasis is a group of diseases that affect humans and animals. The agent is a nematode parasite of the order Filariidae, commonly called filariae. They are usually classified according to the final habitat of the adult worms in the human host.
These parasites are transmitted to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito and develop into adult worms in the lymphatic vessels, causing severe damage and swelling (lymphoedema). Elephantiasis – painful, disfiguring swelling of the legs and genital organs – is a classic sign of late-stage disease.
Your Path to Meaningful Connections in the World of Health and Medicine
Connect, Collaborate, and Engage!
Coming Soon - Stitches, the innovative chat app from the creators of HWN. Join meaningful conversations on health and medical topics. Share text, images, and videos seamlessly. Connect directly within HWN's topic pages and articles.