We’re investigating a new treatment for this debilitating disease of the lymph system
Lymphatic filariasis (also known as elephantiasis) is a painful and debilitating disease that affects the lymph system. It is caused by a microscopic worm – Wuchereria bancrofti, Brugia malayi and B. timori – transmitted to people through the bite of infected mosquitos. Inside the human body, the parasitic worms travel through the lymph system, often undetected, eventually causing abnormal enlargement in the arms, legs and genitalia.
People are suffering from lymphatic filariasis in tropical and sub-tropical regions throughout the world, particularly in Africa, south and east Asia and some Pacific islands.
people live in endemic areas
People in at least 50 countries are threatened by the disease
World Health Organization. Ending the neglect to attain the Sustainable Development Goals: A road map for neglected tropical diseases.
Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME). Global Burden of Disease Study 2019 (GBD 2019) Results.
people were infected as of 2019
Current community-directed treatments for lymphatic filariasis include albendazole, which stops the worms from absorbing sugar, alone or in combination with ivermectin (an anti-parasitic drug) or diethylcarbamazine (which inhibits the metabolism of a specific omega-6 fatty acid in the parasites), depending on the presence of co-endemic infections.
The treatment we are studying for lymphatic filariasis is moxidectin, an anti-microfilarial medicine. We are collaborating in a Phase 2/3 lymphatic filariasis study being conducted in Côte d'Ivoire by the Death to Onchocerciasis and Lymphatic Filariasis (DOLF) project run by Washington University, St. Louis, USA, with the Regional Hospital of Agboville (Côte d'Ivoire) and Case Western Reserve University (USA) as collaborators. This study was initiated in Q3 2020 and will evaluate the safety and efficacy of moxidectin in combination with albendazole and diethylcarbamazine. Preliminary results from this study were presented at the 2022 American Society of Tropical Medicine & Hygiene meeting in Seattle, Washington, USA (Read more here).
A paediatric dose-finding study, a phase 3b trial comparing efficacy and safety of annual and biannual moxidectin or ivermectin treatment and mathematical modelling of moxidectin and ivermectin based elimination strategies to support country policy decisions.
Developing a paediatric formulation moxidectin for neglected infectious diseases.
A painful and debilitating disease of the lymph system affecting over 50 million people at any one time.
A soil-transmitted infection affecting up to 100 million people, particularly children.
A chronic infectious disease which may cause skin lesions and nerve damage found in 127 countries.