India’s neglected tropical diseases

PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
(Accessed 24 March 2018)

India’s neglected tropical diseases
Peter J. Hotez, Ashish Damania
| published 22 Mar 2018 PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases
The Global Burden of Disease Study (GBD) is generating important and often nonintuitive information about the prevalence, incidence, morbidity, and mortality of the world’s major communicable and noncommunicable diseases (NCDs). An emerging narrative from the GBD is the gradual ascendency of the NCDs, especially among the world’s large low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) [1]. But with regards to the neglected tropical diseases (NTDs), we have also seen how these chronic and debilitating infections of poverty might also account for a high percentage of the global disease burden [2].
A more in-depth analysis of NTDs from the GBD 2016 also reveals an important geopolitical dimension of the major NTDs [1]. As shown in Table 1, today the nation of India experiences the world’s largest absolute burden of at least 11 major NTDs. Excluding NTDs that are spatially bound by their requirement for unique insect vectors or snail hosts (e.g., schistosomiasis, onchcocerciasis, human African trypanosomiasis, and Chagas disease), India leads the world in terms of the total number of cases for each of the major NTDs, as defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) [3]…