March 15, 2011- The Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases announced today that it has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Eisai Co., Ltd to provide advocacy support for Eisai’s diethylcarbamazine (generic name, “DEC”) donation to the World Health Organization (WHO). This donation is a significant contribution to the global neglected tropical disease (NTD) response and will expand the pharmaceutical industry’s role in global health initiatives to combat NTDs. Through collaboration around advocacy activities related to the DEC donation, the Global Network will assist Eisai in forging and maintaining strong ties with international agencies, foundations, corporate and government agencies working to combat NTDs. The Global Network will work with Eisai on its planning, reporting, and implementation activities around the DEC donation and will provide Eisai with technical advice for future decision-making on NTD initiatives. Eisai will work with the Global Network to deepen its engagement in NTD policy, advocacy, and resource mobilization efforts, particularly in Asia.
On November 14, 2010, Eisai announced that it will produce and donate 2.2 billion tablets of diethylcarbamazine (generic name, “DEC”), to the World Health Organization, over a six-year period between 2012 and 2017. DEC is a medicine used to treat lymphatic filariasis, an extremely painful, debilitating and disfiguring disease that affects more than 120 million people in 80 countries worldwide.
“We are eager to work with Eisai to promote and amplify its crucial DEC donation to the WHO that will dramatically help to eliminate the burden of lymphatic filariasis, a neglected tropical disease that affects so many people and communities around the world,” said Dr. Neeraj Mistry, Managing Director, Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases.
About Lymphatic Filariasis
Lymphatic Filariasis, also known as elephantiasis, affects more than 120 million people in 80 countries worldwide, and is an extremely painful, debilitating and disfiguring disease. Found mainly in tropical and sub-tropical climates, the disease is caused by the thread-like parasitic filarial worms Wuchereria bancrofti and Brugia malayi, which live in the lymphatic system and can cause extreme swelling of the extremities and genitals. The disease is transmitted to humans by mosquitoes. More than 40 million sufferers of elephantiasis are seriously incapacitated and disfigured from the disease. More than a billion people around the globe – 18 percent of the world’s population – are at risk for contracting lymphatic filariasis.
About Eisai Co., Ltd.
Eisai Co., Ltd. is a research-based human health care (hhc) company that discovers, develops and markets products throughout the world. Through a global network of research facilities, manufacturing sites and marketing subsidiaries, Eisai actively participates in all aspects of the worldwide healthcare system. Eisai employs approximately 11,000 employees worldwide. http://www.eisai.co.jp/index.html
About the Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases
The Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases, a major program of the Sabin Vaccine Institute, is an advocacy and resource mobilization initiative dedicated to eliminating the most common neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). Through a network of partnering international agencies, scientists and advocates, the Global Network aims to raise the awareness, political will, and funding necessary to control and eliminate the seven most common NTDs that afflict and stigmatize 1.4 billion of the world’s poorest people. www.globalnetwork.org