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WHO plans to eliminate parasite

13th April 2007

The World Health Organisation (WHO), along with drug giant Bayer HealthCare, have announced plans to expand the fight against Chagas disease in Latin America.

The parasitic disease affects around nine million people, mostly in South American countries, most of them children.

Bayer is sponsoring the production of nifurtimox, which treats the disease, providing 2.5 million tablets free of charge to treat around 30,000 patients over the next five years.

Chagas disease can be asymptomatic for many years, and lack of relevant biosecurity measures in blood banks around the world has led to cases beginning to be seen in Europe and the United States.

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