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Lessons Learned from Hookworm and Schistosomiasis Vaccine Research & Other NTD News

News roundup

This news roundup is a collection of headlines and other items on neglected tropical diseases, and does not reflect the work or the views of the Neglected Tropical Diseases Support Center.

zoonotic schisto

Life cycle of Schistosoma parasites in West Africa.


Lymphatic filariasis

IDA distribution in Samoa

Mectizan Donation Program
Mectizan Program Notes: Summer 2018
Implementation of the new WHO-recommended strategy using ivermectin, DEC, and albendazole (IDA) for accelerated lymphatic filariasis (LF) elimination in countries where onchocerciasis is not co-endemic is well underway. To date, MDP and the MEC have approved applications from American Samoa, Egypt, Fiji, Kenya, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, and Tuvalu. MDA for LF using IDA is beginning to roll out in these countries. As shown in the photo, courtesy of WHO WPRO, Samoa rolled out IDA this week and American Samoa plans to begin next month. Egypt was validated in March 2018 for the elimination of LF as a public health problem. Egypt applied for medicines to implement IDA in hot-spots discovered during the post-treatment surveillance period to ensure transmission has stopped.


Cross-border transmissions from DRC, South Sudan stall Ugandan bid to eliminate river blindness

Oscar Nkala
Outbreak News Today
The Ugandan government says effort to eliminate river blindness (onchocerciasis) have suffered setbacks from recurrent cross-border transmissions from neighboring South Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Addressing a meeting held to evaluate progress towards the elimination of river blindness in Kampala recently, Uganda Onchocerciasis Elimination Expert Advisory Committee head Dr Edridah Muheki said long-running conflicts in her neighbors have complicated Uganda’s disease control efforts.

Two States Break River Blindness Transmission

The Carter Center
Eye of the Eagle
More than 2.6 million people in two states in central Nigeria will stop taking medication for onchocerciasis this year because transmission of the disease has been interrupted. The Nigerian Ministry of Health, The Carter Center, and other partners announced this success in March 2018. Nasarawa and Plateau states will now begin a period of post-treatment surveillance, which can last up to five years, to monitor for any evidence that the parasite has re-emerged in the absence of Mectizan® (ivermectin, donated by MSD, also known as Merck & Co. Inc., Kenilworth, N.J., USA). Once this period is finished—pending good results—the states can declare that they have eliminated transmission of river blindness.


Schistosomiasis's evolutionary response to a changing world - Can we keep up?

London Centre for Neglected Tropical Disease Research
In an effort to unravel the complex transmission dynamics of zoonotic hybrid schistosomiasis, the Royal Veterinary College's Anna Borlase, Elsa Leger, and Stefano Catalano comment on some of the many components that could affect disease control and elimination programmes in West Africa. . . Such diseases impacting both humans and livestock often force a double burden on the communities that rely on animals for their livelihoods, with both public health challenges and veterinary issues (animal disease, death, sanctions, market closures, etc.). Identifying the best approaches and solutions to these complex situations often requires a cross-sector collaboration.

When Should the Emphasis on Schistosomiasis Control Move to Elimination?

W. Evan Secor and Daniel G. Colley
Tropical Medicine and Infectious Disease
Switching from a goal of controlling morbidity to interrupting transmission may well be currently feasible in some countries in the Caribbean, some areas in South America, northern Africa, and selected endemic areas in sub-Saharan Africa where there have been improvements in sanitation and access to clean water. However, in most of sub-Saharan Africa, where programmatic interventions still consist solely of annual mass drug administration, such a switch in strategies remains premature. There is a continued need for operational research on how best to reduce transmission to a point where interruption of transmission may be achievable.

Researchers are developing vaccines for human parasites

A partnership between the George Washington University (GW) School of Medicine and Health Sciences and the Texas Children's Hospital Center for Vaccine Development has led to development of several hookworm and schistosomiasis vaccine candidates. A paper published in Trends in Parasitology outlines lessons learned along this critical path. . . "Creating a helminth vaccine is arduous. There are challenges at all stages, and at many points, we were responsible for creating novel testing, formulation, and manufacturing processes, in order to advance to the next step in our clinical trials," said David Diemert, MD, associate professor of medicine at the GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences. "We hope this paper will help accelerate activities for other researchers as they progress along this critical path."

Soil-Transmitted Helminthiasis

Toward the 2020 goal of soil-transmitted helminthiasis control and elimination

Sören L. Becker et al.
PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases
With 2020 on the horizon, we are well into the second decade post-{World Health Assembly Resolution }WHA 54.19. Major challenges remain. Among others, these include (1) the need to maximize the impact of pharmaceutic donations of anthelmintic drugs, (2) the need to clarify targets to guide monitoring efforts moving forward, and (3) the need to take into account recent successes of the Global Program to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis (GPELF).

Sustainable access to deworming drugs in a changing landscape

William M. Lin and David G. Addiss
The Lancet Infectious Diseases
The global effort to control and eliminate soil-transmitted helminthiasis (STH) currently depends on donations of albendazole and mebendazole, which reached more than 530 million children in 2016. As we approach 2020, the WHO goal of eliminating STH as a public health problem will not be met in most endemic countries, and ongoing treatment will be necessary.

Shedding Light on NTDs: Soil-Transmitted Helminthiases

Lauren Goodwin
The Disease Daily
To further our NTD discussion from last week, this week we will be discussing soil-transmitted helminthiases. These are intestinal infections caused by parasitic worms, which includes Ascariasis, Hookworm and Whipworm. Together, the three infections are classified as neglected tropical diseases due to the crippling disability they can cause despite being able to be controlled or eliminated. Globally, there are approximately 807-1,121 million Ascaris infections, 604-795 million living with whipworm infections and 576-740 million living with hookworm infections.


Progress in curbing trachoma, a blinding, infectious disease

Christopher Connell
Share America
Each year free antibiotics are given to ten of millions of people thanks to the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the World Health Organization (WHO), foundations and other partners, including the American pharmaceutical company Pfizer, which donates its powerful antibiotic Zithromax (generic name azithromycin). Pfizer has donated 760 million doses since 1999.

Study: Mass antibiotic use limits but doesn't banish trachoma

Robert Roos
In parts of Ethiopia with heavy burdens of trachoma, the world's leading infectious cause of blindness, long-term mass treatment of children with azithromycin kept the disease at a low level but did not eliminate it, according to a study described today in PLoS Medicine. The 3-year-study followed a 4-year trial of azithromycin treatment to prevent trachoma in Ethiopian children. The new study showed that trachoma prevalence remained low and stable in communities where annual or semiannual treatment continued but that it increased in communities where the antibiotic was stopped. . . The authors suggested several possible explanations for the failure to eliminate trachoma, including "relatively poor water and sanitation" and introduction of infection by residents who did not participate in the treatment program.

Memories of Nepal’s Trachoma Elimination Journey

Kalpana Bhandari
On May 21, 2018, the World Health Organization (WHO) officially declared that trachoma, a neglected tropical disease (NTD) that can cause permanent blindness, has been eliminated from Nepal. . . I grew up in Nepal and have worked on NTDs in the country for about 9 years. Reading about the work of my colleagues and friends — which often involved long days, hard travels, and many personal sacrifices — in a major world newspaper made me feel pride and nostalgia, bringing back memories from the start of my own NTD journey almost a decade ago.

What it means to work in a team gathering data to eliminate trachoma

Cristina Jiminez
I feel honored to play a part in this important work, which helps to transform lives and support countries to eliminate this blinding disease. To end the suffering of people with neglected tropical diseases such as trachoma, countries and organisations need to move fast – and collecting accurate data is vital.

Trachoma Program Celebrates 20 Years of Impact

The Carter Center
Eye of the Eagle
In its first 20 years, the Carter Center’s Trachoma Control Program has assisted eight countries in implementing the SAFE strategy to control trachoma, facilitating more than 780,000 surgeries for trichiasis, distributing 182 million doses of antibiotics during mass drug administration, promoting health education in 30,000 communities, and aiding in the construction of 3.6 million latrines. The program has led operational research efforts to improve performance and has documented important new evidence in the fight against the disease.

VIDEO: The road to trachoma elimination in Ghana

In 2018 Ghana made headlines as the first sub-Saharan African country to eliminate blinding trachoma, freeing millions of people from the pain and potential sight loss caused by the disease. Success in Ghana highlights the power of partnership working. Sightsavers is proud to have worked on trachoma elimination with the Ministry of Health and Ghana Health Service, communities, donors, pharmaceutical companies, WHO, more than 20 NGOs including members of the International Coalition of Trachoma Control such as: International Trachoma Initiative, The Carter Center, USAID END in Africa and FHI360. Together we can end trachoma.


Swachh Bharat Could Prevent 3 Lakh Deaths: World Health Organization

NDTV (India)
If India remains committed to achieving 100 percent coverage in terms of safe sanitation services by October 2019, as many as 3,00,000 deaths caused due to diarrheal disease and protein-energy malnutrition since the country launched the Swachh Bharat Mission in 2014 can be averted, the World Health Organization said.

What Do Neglected Tropical Diseases Have to Do With Nutrition?

Diana Duong
Global Citizen
From blindness and agonizing pain to critically damaging internal organs and disfiguring limbs, the ways in which neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) can wreak havoc on the human body are seemingly endless. But one of the most detrimental ways that NTDs attack the body may actually be invisible. The relationship between NTDs and nutrition is, quite literally, a competition. Parasites and bacterial diseases live in the same space, taking over the host — in this case, a human body — and compete for their nutrients from food.

Monitoring equity in universal health coverage with essential services for neglected tropical diseases. . .

Christopher Fitzpatrick et al.
The Lancet Global Health
A service coverage index has recently been proposed to monitor progress towards universal health coverage (UHC), and baseline results for 2015 are available. However, evidence on equity in that progress is scarce. The service coverage index did not consider services for neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). . . We developed an index focused on coverage of services for NTDs, comparable in methods to the UHC service coverage index.

What do we know about community-based health worker programs? A systematic review. . .

Kerry Scott et al.
Human Resources for Health
Evidence concerning [community health worker, or] CHW program effectiveness can help policymakers identify a range of options to consider. However, this evidence needs to be contextualized and adapted in different contexts to inform policy and practice. Advancing the evidence base with context-specific elements will be vital to helping these programs achieve their full potential.

Community Involvement in the Care of Persons Affected by Podoconiosis—A Lesson for Other Skin NTDs

Abebayehu Tora, Asrat Mengiste, Gail Davey and Maya Semrau
Tropical Medicine and Infectious Disease
This paper focuses on community-based care of podoconiosis, and, in particular, the role that community involvement can have in the reduction of stigma against people affected by podoconiosis. . . Since people affected by podoconiosis and other skin NTDs often suffer the double burden of mental-health illness, which is similarly stigmatized, we then point to examples from the mental-health field in low-resource community settings to suggest avenues for stigma reduction and increased patient engagement that may be relevant across a range of skin NTDs, though further research is needed on this.

UNGA Prepares for Three High-level Meetings on Health

Faye Leone
SDG Knowledge Hub
Governments have advanced preparations for three high-level meetings on health: a high-level meeting on fighting tuberculosis (TB); the third high-level meeting of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) on the prevention and control of non-communicable diseases (NCDs); and a high-level meeting on universal health care (UHC). All three topics are the subject of SDG targets found under Goal 3 (good health and well-being). Ending the TB epidemic by 2030 is called for in SDG target 3.3, which also addresses AIDS, malaria, neglected tropical diseases, hepatitis, water-borne diseases and other communicable diseases.


Results of the 2017 global WHO survey on yaws

World Health Organization
Weekly Epidemiological Record
This survey is the first that aims to determine the current status of yaws in the world. The response rate was low, but it is expected that this paper will create the awareness necessary to increase surveillance and reporting of the disease globally. As yaws is targeted for eradication, it should be included in national lists of notifiable diseases. Awareness about yaws must be increased, and countries should review their endemicity status. Careful mapping of yaws, from global to local scale, will help in planning mass drug administration campaigns with country support and is therefore a crucial step in the successful eradication of the disease.

MyD88 activation in cardiomyocytes contributes to the heart immune response to acute Trypanosoma cruzi infection. . .

Danni Yohani Santana et al.
PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Cardiomyopathy is the most serious consequence of Chagas disease, a neglected human disorder caused by Trypanosoma cruzi infection. Because T. cruzi parasites invade cardiomyocytes, we sought to investigate whether these cells recognize the parasite in vivo by receptors signaling through the MyD88 adaptor, which mediates the activation pathway of most Toll-like receptors (TLRs) and IL-1/IL-18 receptors, and influence the development of acute cardiac pathology.


Sakib Burza, Simon Croft, and Marleen Boelaert
The Lancet
Leishmaniasis is a poverty-related disease with two main clinical forms: visceral leishmaniasis and cutaneous leishmaniasis. An estimated 0·7–1 million new cases of leishmaniasis per year are reported from nearly 100 endemic countries. . . [The World Health Organization, or] WHO lists leishmaniasis as one of the neglected tropical diseases for which the development of new treatments is a priority. Major evidence gaps remain, and new tools are needed before leishmaniasis can be definitively controlled.

[CORRESPONDENCE] Lymphoedema management in podoconiosis

Jill Brooks, Steven Ersser, Paul Matts and Terence Ryan
The Lancet Global Health
As researchers in the skin treatment of podoconiosis, we were interested to read the Article by Henok Negussie and colleagues on lymphoedema management to prevent acute dermatolymphangioadenitis in podoconiosis (July, 2018). We were, however, concerned about the interpretation of our cited trial on skin barrier function in those with podoconiosis in Ethiopia.

[CORRESPONDENCE] Lymphoedema management in podoconiosis – Authors reply

Mesert Molla et al.
The Lancet Global Health
We thank Jill Brooks and colleagues for their comments on how their trial was referred to in our article. We used the adjective “small” to provide context for readers of The Lancet Global Health. Given that the average number of individuals in the nine non-stepped-wedge trials reported so far in this journal in 2018 was over 3600, both the Brooks trial and GoLBeT are small by comparison. Small trials can be highly efficient, and the term is not used pejoratively.

Researchers report mechanism that affects multiplication of dengue virus lineage

Janaína Simões
Medical Xpress
A lineage of type 1 dengue virus found in Brazil is able to prevail over another, even though it it is less prolific in vector mosquitoes and infected human cells. This discovery involved several Brazilian institutions as well as a university in the United States. According to the study, the lineage activates a weaker immune response in the patient and is less strongly combated. As a result, the virus is better able to multiply in the organism and is more likely to be transmitted to others via infected mosquitoes. Thus, this lineage supersedes the other owing to its significantly greater overall capacity to multiply in mosquitoes and patients.

Mycetoma: a clinical dilemma in resource limited settings

Pembi Emmanuel et al.
Annals of Clinical Microbiology and Antimicrobials
Mycetoma is a chronic mutilating disease of the skin and the underlying tissues caused by fungi or bacteria. Although recently included in the list of neglected tropical diseases by the World Health Organization, strategic control and preventive measures are yet to be outlined. Thus, it continues to pose huge public health threat in many tropical and sub-tropical countries. . . There is an urgent need for research funding for mycetoma, a disease plagued by severe physical disabilities and social stigma leading to isolation.

Changes in malaria vector bionomics and transmission patterns in the equatorial forest region of Cameroon between 2000 and 2017

Rolan Bamou et al.
Parasites & Vectors
Increased use of long-lasting insecticidal nets (LLINs) over the last decade has considerably improved the control of malaria in sub-Saharan Africa. However, there is still a paucity of data on the influence of LLIN use and other factors on mosquito bionomics in different epidemiological foci. The objective of this study was to provide updated data on the evolution of vector bionomics and malaria transmission patterns in the equatorial forest region of Cameroon over the period 2000–2017, during which LLIN coverage has increased substantially.

The portfolio effect cushions mosquito populations and malaria transmission against vector control interventions

Gerry F. Killeen and Thomas E. Reed
Malaria Journal
Portfolio effects were first described as a basis for mitigating against financial risk by diversifying investments. Distributing investment across several different assets can stabilize returns and reduce risks by statistical averaging of individual asset dynamics that often correlate weakly or negatively with each other. The same simple probability theory is equally applicable to complex ecosystems, in which biological and environmental diversity stabilizes ecosystems against natural and human-mediated perturbations. Given the fundamental limitations to how well the full complexity of ecosystem dynamics can be understood or anticipated, the portfolio effect concept provides a simple framework for more critical data interpretation and pro-active conservation management.

Math shows how human behavior spreads infectious diseases

Mathematics can help public health workers better understand and influence human behaviours that lead to the spread of infectious disease, according to a study from the University of Waterloo. . . "We tend to treat disease systems in isolation from social systems, and we don't often think about how they connect to each other, or influence each other," said Chris Bauch, co-author and a professor in the Department of Applied Mathematics at Waterloo. "This gives us a better appreciation of how social reactions to infectious diseases can influence which strains become prominent in the population."

On this day in medical history: Sir Ronald Ross’ game-changing discovery about malaria gives rise to World Mosquito Day

Liz Meszaros
On August 20, 1897, while dissecting the stomach of a mosquito, Ross discovered a malaria parasite. He continued his research using malaria in birds as a model. Working with mosquitoes that fed on malaria-infected birds, he observed that malaria parasites developed within the mosquitoes, migrated to the infected bird’s salivary glands, and were thus transmitted to any healthy birds the mosquito subsequently fed upon. In this way, Ross proved that the Anopheles mosquito was involved in the transmission of malaria parasites to humans.

Upcoming Events 

Webinar: Primary Eye Care Training Manual
August 22, Online
IAPB Africa is delighted to announce another Webinar: Primary Eye Care Training Manual. The Webinar will be held on 22 August 2018 and will be led by two presenters, Dr Ciku Mathenge, Technical Advisor to WHO AFRO in the development of the package (and IAPB Eye Health Hero) to present on the PEC training Manual document and Dr Bo Wiafe, Chair of the IAPB Africa Working Group on Primary Eye Care to present on impact in country.

International Conference on Emerging Infectious Diseases
August 26-29,  Atlanta, Georgia
Since 1998, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has hosted the International Conference on Emerging Infectious Diseases (ICEID). Held every 2-3 years, the conference brings together more than 1500 public health professionals from around the world to encourage the exchange of the latest information on issues affecting the emergence, spread, and control of infectious diseases. With scientific input from more than 30 national and global partners, ICEID 2018 will mark the 10th occurrence of this premier infectious disease conference.

5th International Conference on Neglected Tropical & Infectious Diseases
August 29-30,  Boston, Massachussetts
Theme: Uniting all to overcome and fight against NTD's & infectious diseases for improved health protection.

78th FIP World Congress of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences
September 2-6, Glasgow, United Kingdom
The 2018 FIP congress in Glasgow, Scotland, invites pharmacy practitioners and pharmaceutical scientists from around the world to come together to consider ways of extending the role of pharmacists so that they play a full part in ensuring patients, and health systems, achieve full benefit from the medicines people take.

Gnatwork Bangladesh '18
September 2-6, Bangladesh
Our first international workshop will be held in Bangladesh on the 2 – 6 September 2018. We aim to bring together researchers who have an interest in blackflies, sandflies and biting midges for networking and sharing of expertise.The first day of our week-long workshop will consist of a conference day of talks, consisting of lectures from experts on vector ecology and epidemiology. We will also hold a short workshop on this day to discuss the current issues affecting vector research. Following this, we are holding a four-day training course for early-career researchers, to teach practical laboratory and field skills for research on sandflies, blackflies and biting midges.

Contol and Elimination of Visceral Leishmaniasis (Kala-azar)
September 3,  Online Course
The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine is offering an online course bringing together all aspects of elimination and control together, this course provides a unique platform to learn about the tools needed for an effective VL control programme. The course contains examples from experts delivering current control and elimination programmes in South Asia and East Africa. The course provides learners unprecedented access to practical tools and insight into understanding the requirements and complexities of such programmes.

2018 ROP Africa Symposium
September 3-4,  Cape Town, South Africa
The International Paediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus Council and The Department of Pediatric Ophthalmology at The Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital, Cape Town are proud to announce the 2018 ROP Africa Symposium.

IAPB Council of Members Meeting
September 15-16,  Hyderabad, India
The 2018 International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) Council of Members will be held in Hyderabad and our local host will be L.V. Prasad Eye Institute who are celebrating the 20th anniversary of ICARE (International Centre for Advancement of Rural Eye Care). We are expecting 400 delegates between the 15-16 September to celebrate the progress that has been made in India and across the South East Asia Region as well as looking ahead at the challenges that eye health faces not just in the region but across the globe.

RSTMH Annual Meeting 2018
September 19-20,  London, UK
The theme of [The Royal Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, or] RSTMH’s 2018 two-day Annual Meeting is intersections of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) with non-communicable diseases (NCDs) and the Sustainable Development Goals. We will bring together voices from different sectors, locations and disease areas to showcase the lesser-known problems caused by intersections, and their impact.

First International Podoconiosis Conference
September 23, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
The theme for this is ‘Research to Implementation: A Call for Global Action’. With this invitation to register, we are also calling for abstracts from all those involved in podoconiosis research and implementation. In order to stimulate high levels of participation, the conference programme will include two sessions of research presentations, one of implementation presentations, and a poster display area. Abstracts for each of these will be selected by competitive process, and prizes will be awarded for the best research and the best implementation presentations. Travel awards will be available for a limited number of selected abstracts.

Access Challenge Universal Health Forum
September 24, New York, New York
The Universal Health Forum will celebrate the drive towards Universal Health Access in Africa. There will be high-level forums on maternal health, child health and malaria, NTDs and NCDs. There will also be an exhibition hall showcasing new technology, diagnostics, and treatments, and a dinner and awards ceremony celebrating leaders from across Africa.

NNN 2018 
September 24-26, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
We are delighted to announce the dates for the 9th NNN annual conference, subject to venue availability.

10th Euro-Global Conference on Infectious Diseases
September 27-29, Rome, Italy
Theme: Advancing in science and improving care to prevent infectious diseases.

International Conference on Migration Health
October 1-3, Rome, Italy
Hosted by the international Society of Travel Medicine.

Scientific Journalism Workshop
October 1-4, Kampala, Uganda
We would like to invite health/science journalists from Cameroon, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zimbabwe to submit their applications for a media workshop to be held on 1st – 4th October 2018 in Kampala, Uganda. All interested journalists may apply using the online application form no later than August 17, 2018.

5th Global Symposium on Health Systems Research
October 8-12,  Liverpool, United Kingdom
Theme: Advancing health systems for all in the SDG area.

World Sight Day
October 11, 2018
World Sight Day (WSD) is an annual day of awareness held on the second Thursday of October, to focus global attention on blindness and vision impairment. This year, the "Call to Action" for World Sight Day is "Eye Care Everywhere."

World Health Summit
October 14-16, Berlin, Germany
Central topics for this year's meeting will include pandemic preparedness, sustainable development goals, and access to essential medicines.

Neglected Tropical Diseases Congress: The Future Challenges
October 15-17, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
The conference includes prompt presentations, special sessions, workshops, symposium, oral talks, poster presentations and exhibitions. We expect your kind presence at the conference which will discuss the recent emerging diseases, outbreaks, categories, epidemiology, diagnosis, therapeutics etc.

Collaborations Addressing Vulnerable Populations Forum
October 16-17, Herndon, Virginia
The Collaborations Addressing Vulnerable Populations (CAVP) Forum is a platform dedicated to the steps being made across the biomedical landscape to provide healthcare solutions to populations that represent an unmet medical need. The CAVP Forum will provide attendees with the opportunity to attend sessions from five unique tracks. We will highlight how drug repurposing can alleviate development costs, discuss different ways to ensure access to safe and cost-affective drugs, examine regulatory pathways and incentives targeting rare and neglected tropical diseases, and explore public–private partnerships that support the development of new treatments for vulnerable populations.

The Roadmap to Echinococcosis Control in Peru: Review and Synthesis of the Evidence
October 16-18, Lima, Peru
The objectives of this workshop are to review the cystic echinococcosis situation in Latine American and Peru, to review state-of-the0art methodologies, and to evaluate the evidence generated by pilot projects. The workshop is being coordinated by the University of Surrey (UK) and the Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos (Peru), and will have contributions from other leading researchers. We are now inviting Early Career Researchers (ECR) from the UK or Peru to apply to attend this workshop. All travel and accommodation expenses will be covered by the Research Links programme. Applications are welcome until 1 August. Successful candidates will be contacted in early August.

Introduction to Agent-Based Modeling for Infectious Diseases
October 27, New Orleans, Louisiana
ASTMH and the Institute for Disease Modeling (IDM) are partnering to offer an introductory course on using agent-based models for modeling infectious diseases. Modeling is an essential component for understanding disease dynamics and creating effective control strategies, yet it remains inaccessible to many researchers in public health.

Tropical Dermatology
October 27 - 28, New Orleans, Louisiana
This 1.5-day course offers an overview of Tropical Dermatology, an essential component of tropical medicine. The course is designed for clinicians who are already familiar with clinical tropical medicine, either from working in tropical environments or from seeing patients returning from the tropics. Saturday’s session is devoted to cutaneous leishmaniais (the latest in the rapidly changing epidemiology, diagnosis and management). Skin conditions will be reviewed from the standpoint of diagnosing and treating individual patients – and from managing skin diseases on a population basis. 

PLOS Writing Workshop
October 28, New Orleans, Louisiana
PLOS Pathogens and PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases, along with the American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene and Vector Borne and Zoonotic Diseases, present a Writing Workshop intended to equip and support early career researchers and researchers from disease endemic regions in understanding the publication process and best practices for manuscript writing. Highlights of the sessions include: framing your research and choosing your journal, mapping out your paper, abstract writing, the mechanics of writing, and research and publication ethics. For more information, please contact Charlotte Bhaskar at

Big Data and Genomics – A Practical Workshop on Sequence Analysis in Parasitology
October 28, New Orleans, Louisiana
This practical, hands-on workshop will introduce participants to publicly available sequence analysis tools. Using parasite genome and/or RNAseq data obtained from actual field or laboratory experiments, participants will learn analytical methods and workflows used to extract meaningful biological, evolutionary and/or epidemiological insights. Through live exercises led by experts in the field, participants will learn how to retrieve data from sequence repositories, run them through preconfigured or customized workflows, and visualize and explore the data using web-based tools.

The Global Health Impact of Urbanization and Megacities – Trends, Risk Management and Research Needs
October 28, New Orleans, Louisiana
This course will explore the changing worldwide landscape and global health risks with the exponential increase in urban population growth.  Beyond vector-borne diseases, the lack of barriers between animals, vectors, the environment and water supply increases the risk of other diseases such as leptospirosis, Ebola and plague. We urgently need to be prepared for new microbial transmission pathways in the urban environment that affect human health. 

67th Annual ASTMH Meeting 
October 28 - November 1, New Orleans, Louisiana
The ASTMH Annual Meeting draws tropical medicine and global health professionals representing academia, government, non-profits, philanthropy, NGOs, industry, military and private practice. The meeting is designed for researchers, professors, government and public health officials, military personnel, travel clinic physicians, practicing physicians in tropical medicine, students and all health care providers working in the fields of tropical medicine, hygiene and global health. 

7th Global Scabies Control Meeting
October 28, New Orleans, Louisiana
We are pleased to announce the date for the 7th Global Scabies Control meeting. The meeting will be held on Sunday 28th October in New Orleans, LA, USA. Please mark this in your diaries now! Further information and registration details will follow in coming months. 

1st International Caparica Congress on Leishmaniasis
October 29-31, Caparica, Portugal
This conference intends to gather researchers working in areas related to Leishmaniasis, from treatment to prevention. In fact, as leishmaniasis is slowly but constantly, increasing worldwide, this conference is addressed to show the latest research trends in this area. The idea is to push forward the battle against this persistent disease. 

Women Leaders in Global Health London 2018
November 8-9, London, United Kingdom
Celebrating women in global health leadership and cultivating the next generation of women leaders. 

APHA 2018 Annual Meeting and Expo
November 10-14, San Diego, California
Theme: "Creating the Healthiest Nation: Health Equity Now."  

Vector-Borne Diseases in the UK - Biennial Meeting, 2018
December 3-4, Norwich, United Kingdom
This meeting will be the fourth we have held on this topic, with previous meetings in 2012, 2014 and 2016, and like before we will bring together members of the major UK research groups who have an interest in vectors or vector-borne diseases which could be a threat to the UK; groups with wider but related areas of interest; members of key UK Government Departments and their Agencies; and representatives of European organisations with an interest in this topic. 

Women Deliver 2019 Conference 
June 3-6, 2019, Vancouver, Canada
The Women Deliver 2019 Conference – the world’s largest gathering on the health, rights, and wellbeing of women and girls – will serve as a fueling station for advocates working to achieve a more gender equal world. In the summer of 2019, over 6,000 world leaders, influencers, advocates, academics, activists, and journalists will flock to Vancouver with dreams of accelerating progress girls and women everywhere.