Launch of the ISNTD's first disease brief - free download!
View this email in your browser
Benchtop to barrios:

the challenge of developing new drugs for Chagas disease

Disease brief launched!
The ISNTD is delighted to launch its first Disease Brief reviewing current challenges in drug discovery & development for treating Chagas disease worldwide. This report is authored by pharmaceutical industry consultant Mark Clark (BIApharma), with invaluable input from Pr. Simon Croft (LSHTM), Dr. Julio Martin (GSK) and Dr. Eric Chatelain (DNDi). 

Click here for your copy of the ISNTD Chagas Disease Brief (PDF)

In addition, meet the authors at ISNTD 2016, our third annual conference on drug discovery, development & diagnostics for tropical diseases, and follow the Chagas disease panel chaired by Ms. Roxanne Khamsi (Chief News Editor, Nature Medicine). 

2016 information, programme & registration here.

Disease Brief Summary
• Chagas is a vector-borne neglected tropical disease (NTD) which affects 6-8m people worldwide. It is the leading cause of cardiac morbidity/mortality in rural and poor suburban areas of Latin America and represents a growing problem in other continents through population migration.
• The longstanding therapeutic options, benznidazole and nifurtimox, are effective at eradicating the parasite in the acute phase, but their impact on indeterminate and chronic Chagas is not clear (notably on cardiac disease) and they have important drawbacks for patients (prolonged dosing, toxicity).
• Attempts to develop newer drugs for Chagas have been met with disappointment with the failure in recent years of the ergosterol biosynthesis inhibitors, posaconazole and ravuconazole. These drugs had been shown to be highly potent and effective in murine models but ultimately fell badly short in clinical trials.
• The failure of the ergosterol inhibitors under-scores the challenges to new drug development in Chagas. These include the lack of reliable, predictive animal models and the difficulty in assessing disease activity/progression and response to therapy in chronic disease given the lack of validated biomarkers and the protracted timescale.

• While the current clinical pipeline for Chagas is thin, there are grounds for longer-term optimism. The London declaration on NTDs, the WHO roadmap for the 17 NTDs, and the Ebola outbreak of 2014 have together galvanized the pharmaceutical industry, NGOs and other stakeholders. In collaboration with DNDi, a dozen pharmaceutical companies are now actively pursuing R&D in Chagas, screening, identifying and optimizing new leads and developing improved disease models, biomarkers and assays to inform these reinvigorated efforts.

ISNTD annual membership
Join the ISNTD as a member here, from £30 annually.

For the diary

ISNTD Bites 2016 (vector control)
Lord's Cricket Ground, March 17th 2016

ISNTD Coinfections & Comorbidities
Institute of Child Health, April 29th 2016

ISNTD d³ 2016 (drug discovery, development & diagnostics)
Wellcome Trust, May 25-26th 2016

ISNTD Water & Sanitation
BMA House, October 18th 2016

About the author
Mark Clark is a 30-year veteran analyst of the pharmaceutical industry and set up the consultancy firm BIApharma LLP in late-2015, offering investor relations and strategic communications advice to senior management in the pharmaceutical and biotech sectors.

Prior to this, he jointly headed the Deutsche Bank European pharmaceutical research team (from 2009-15). His interest in the field of tropical diseases led to his authoring the well-received report ‘Tropical diseases; social responsibility, neglected market’ in September 2014.

Copies of this report, which was referenced by all of the leading news services (eg, WSJ, FT, Reuters), can be requested from Deutsche Bank and a link is available on the Access to Medicine Index website

Mark also has volunteered for Malaria No More UK.
Copyright © 2016 The International Society for Neglected Tropical Diseases, All rights reserved.

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list