Infectious diseases, including malaria, diarrheal disease, and neglected tropical infections kill over 8 million people each year, according to the Global Burden of Disease 2015 Study. In an effort to address this burden, the Novartis Institute for Tropical Diseases (NITD) is dedicated to finding new medicines that treat and, ultimately, contribute to the elimination of these pathogens.
“Some of these diseases have been around for thousands of years,” says Thierry Diagana, Global Head of NITD. “We now have the opportunity to apply modern drug discovery technologies and find new solutions to this ancient problem. Our vision is to create therapies that can be part of eradication programs for diseases like malaria and human African trypanosomiasis.”
As a small-molecule drug discovery research institute within the Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research (NIBR), NITD works in collaboration with a number of academic and non-profit partners. NITD research currently focuses on parasitic diseases, such as malaria, cryptosporidiosis, and three major kinetoplastid diseases – human African trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness), Chagas disease and leishmaniasis.
“I’m proud to work alongside a team of scientists committed daily to solving a very important problem that affects people who we don’t necessarily see every day,” says Diagana..
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