The francophone network on neglected tropical diseases

PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
(Accessed 2 September 2017)

Policy Platform
The francophone network on neglected tropical diseases
Jean Jannin, Philippe Solano, Isadora Quick, Patrice Debre
| published 31 Aug 2017 PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Launching and organization of the network
The Réseau Francophone sur les Maladies Tropicales Négligées (RFMTN) was officially launched on 8 April 2016 in Montpellier. This network, established under the auspices of the alliance for health and life sciences (AVIESAN), promotes collaboration between French research institutions and gathers research institutions, researchers, medical doctors, NGOs (having operational projects in the field of NTDs), the pharmaceutical industry, foundations, and DEC stakeholders. Its goal is to fill gaps on NTDs thanks to a reinforced contribution of France and to focus on elimination of NTDs. The network seeks to federate French and francophone institutions and individuals working on NTDs and to strengthen relations between NTDs stakeholders. It promotes interinstitutional collaborations on translational research, training, and implementation of elimination projects and aims at raising awareness of NTDs. Finally, it also envisions bridging with other existing European and African NTD networks.
The network, based on individual membership, is also open to associations and scientific societies. It is run by a secretariat hosted by Aviesan and is supported by a scientific and strategic committee comprising the member institutions, DEC stakeholders, industry, and NGOs.
The RFMTN has decided to focus on the “elimination of NTDs,” addressing some key questions:
How do we define ad hoc and implement control activities in order to sustain the targets of the Roadmap?
In the context of very low prevalence prevailing when approaching or reaching elimination targets, what can be done to offer a new spectrum of research to scientists in order to develop adequate tools (diagnostics, treatments, vaccines, vector-control tools) adapted to this context? How can industries and national governments be convinced to stay on board and maintain their efforts? How can we avoid the “punishment of success” by convincing donors to continue providing funding when prevalence of diseases is becoming very low?…