September 27, 2016
Gilead Sciences and the World Health Organization Announce Five-Year Visceral Leishmaniasis Collaboration
VL, also known as kala-azar, is the world’s second-deadliest parasitic infectious disease and affects up to 300,000 people annually in resource-limited countries.
“This new collaboration comes at the right time as we gear up to support
endemic countries in the
Gilead’s support of WHO’s leishmaniasis control program began in 1992.
“We’re proud to continue our long-standing partnership with the
Gilead’s funding will enable WHO to expand and reinforce leishmaniasis surveillance and control efforts in highly endemic areas, including creating a sustainable infrastructure to improve diagnosis and treatment of VL. Gilead’s medicine donation will be distributed by WHO as determined by a group of experts appointed by WHO.
Gilead is one of 20 original endorsers of the ‘London Declaration’ on
Neglected Tropical Diseases - a collaborative disease
elimination and eradication program launched in
About Visceral Leishmaniasis
Visceral leishmaniasis is transmitted by bites from infected sandflies carrying the Leishmania parasite. The parasite attacks the organs and can cause complications such as fever, weight loss, enlargement of the spleen and liver, and increased vulnerability to other life-threatening infections. VL is the most severe form of the disease and is fatal if left untreated in over 95 percent of cases. The disease is endemic in nearly 100 countries, many of them among the poorest in the world. The spread of VL is associated with overcrowding, poor sanitary conditions, population displacement and environmental changes.
AmBisome (amphotericin B) liposome for injection is indicated in the U.S. for the treatment of visceral leishmaniasis. In immunocompromised patients with VL treated with AmBisome, relapse rates were high following initial clearance of parasites. AmBisome is contraindicated in those patients who have demonstrated or have known hypersensitivity to amphotericin B deoxycholate or any other constituents of the product unless, in the opinion of the treating physician, the benefit of therapy outweighs the risk. Anaphylaxis has been reported with amphotericin B deoxycholate and other amphotericin B-containing drugs, including AmBisome. If a severe anaphylactic reaction occurs, the infusion should be immediately discontinued and the patient should not receive further infusions of AmBisome. See the full Prescribing Information for additional important safety information and recommended usage.
U.S. full Prescribing Information for AmBisome is available at www.gilead.com.
For more information on
Gilead Sciences, Inc.
Sung Lee, +1-650-524-7792
Michele Rest, +1-650-577-6935