World Neglected Tropical Diseases Day takes place to increase awareness for neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). January 30 is also the anniversary of the 2012 London Declaration on NTDs, the largest international public-private sector partnership to date to eliminate NTDs.
Iconic landmarks and monuments across the world will light up in orange and purple, the symbolic colours of NTDs to raise public awareness, and Eisai Japan is co-sponsoring the lighting up of Tokyo Tower. In addition, on January 27th Eisai’s global CEO Haruo Naito participates as a panellist representing global pharmaceutical companies in the 10th anniversary event of the ‘London Declaration’.
NTDs are widespread in the world’s poorest regions, where water safety, sanitation and access to healthcare are substandard. NTDs include 20 diseases which affect more than 1.7 billion people globally and are caused mostly by a variety of pathogens including viruses, bacteria, parasites, fungi, and toxins. These diseases are deemed to be ‘neglected’ as they are almost absent from the global health agenda, receive little funding and are associated with stigma and social exclusion.
Eisai has been actively involved in the elimination of NTDs by providing treatment for lymphatic filariasis for free via the World Health Organisation and collaborating with global partners on the research and development of new treatments for other NTDs such as mycetoma disease.