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DNDi Strategy for VL


DNDi’s short-term approach for VL was to develop new treatments by combining existing drugs and/or shortening treatment duration in order to increase tolerability, reduce burden on health systems, and offer greater affordability, whilst also preventing or delaying emergence of resistance. Another objective was to assess efficacy and safety of existing drugs in other countries and regions to extend registration and availability to patients.

Leishmania and HIV co-infection is a growing problem. It is a very difficult to manage clinical entity, due to poor response to treatment with frequent relapses of disease, and is eventually fatal. DNDi is working with MSF towards better treatment for HIV/VL co-infected patients in Africa using existing drugs at different dose/regimen and in combination, and collaborates with ITM-Antwerp in a secondary prophylaxis study.

In the medium term, DNDi is assessing fexinidazole, also under evaluation for the treatment of HAT and soon Chagas disease, for the treatment of primary VL patients.

DNDi’s long-term strategy for VL is to bring new candidates into clinical development through its lead optimization programme with the ultimate goal of developing an oral combination treatment.

By 2018, DNDi aims to deliver from its VL-specific portfolio:
  • An oral, safe, effective, low-cost and short-course treatment
  • A new treatment for PKDL that is shorter course and better tolerated than current options
  • Treatment options for HIV/VL co-infected patients

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