Today Merck & Co., Inc. announced a major contribution to the progress towards elimination of lymphatic filariasis: the donation of their anthelminthic drug ivermectin, which is already the massive donation from them for the elimination of the target filarial infections in onchocerciasis endemic areas, is now increased for the elimination lymphatic filariasis from the rest of the world. The new donation is for treating 100 million people annually up until 2025.
This generous and important additional donation from Merck follows the recent approval by the World Health Organization of the use of a triple therapy regime (known as IDA) for accelerating the efforts to eliminate lymphatic filariasis. A regime developed through the research efforts of the St Louis based research group led by Dr Gary Weil and supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
GAELF congratulates all those who have developed and support this important additional component to our efforts to eliminate this devastating disease as a public health problem.
Details on the donation and the new IDA* (ivermectin, diethylcarbamazine and albendazole) therapy can be found here