[June 27-29, 2012]
OneWorld Health and Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative Convene PKDL Forum
New Delhi, India

International experts gathered in New Delhi, India, for three days of sessions and workshops to discuss post kala-azar dermal leishmaniasis (PKDL).

This meeting, jointly hosted by OneWorld Health and DNDi, focused on the current state of PKDL in East Africa and South Asia, identify main research needs, defined priorities by ranking selected projects, identified sources of funding for selected research projects, and established the role and organization of a PKDL consortium.

About post kala-azar dermal leishmaniasis

PKDL is a neglected complication of visceral leishmaniasis (VL), also known as kala-azar. It manifests itself within months to years after the patient has been treated for VL and is characterized by the occurrence of skin lesions (macules, papules, and nodules) caused by the presence of leishmania parasites and a subsequent immune response. It is thought that the sandfly vector may become infected after feeding on the nodular lesions, and as such, PKDL may play an important role in transmission of VL. In the past, chronic PKDL cases in interepidemic periods have been implicated in the upsurge of epidemics in the Indian subcontinent and in Sudan. There are several epidemiological, clinical, diagnostic, and treatment issues that need to be addressed urgently in order to achieve control of PKDL and, therefore, of VL.