In a new study, published March 5 in the open-access journal PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, the researchers calculate that the impact of symptoms associated with schistosomiasis japonica is 7 to 46 times greater than current global estimates.
This is the first strain-specific study of the global disease burden of schistosomiasis, which is one of the most common infections in the world, infecting an estimated 207 million people in 76 primarily developing countries. The study is part of a growing body of evidence that the serious health effects of this common parasitic disease are far greater than previously estimated.
“Schistosomiasis has a detrimental impact on nutrition and growth and development and can lead to major organ damage and death,” said lead study author Julia Finkelstein (Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, USA). “Current measures may severely underestimate the disability-related impact of the infection and need to be revised.”
Through its Global Burden of Disease project, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates the incidence, prevalence, severity and duration of over 130 major causes of illness, injury and death worldwide. This project is based on a statistical measure called the disability-adjusted life year (DALY), which is the number of years of life lost due to premature death and the years lost due to disability. Policymakers use the data to help determine funding for prevention and treatment programs as well as research.
According to WHO estimates, the disease burden from schistosomiasis is low, with a 0.005 DALY score on a scale of 0 (perfect health) to 1 (death). But the global burden of schistosomiasis has not been examined in more than a decade.
In this new study, the researchers focused on evaluating schistosomiasis japonica, one of the three main forms of schistosomiasis, found in China and the Philippines. The team used data from the scientific literature and a decision-model approach to re-examine the disease burden. Finkelstein and her team arrived at a substantially higher disability impact for schistosomiasis japonica. Instead of a 0.005 score, they arrived at estimates of 0.098 to 0.186.
In a related Expert Commentary article also published in PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, Dr. Charles King (Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, USA) , who was not involved in the study, predicted that, “Ultimately, these new measures of schistosomiasis-associated disability will translate into a greater priority to control schistosomiasis.” Incorporating such new approaches and findings with old estimates will, he said, “be essential to providing a balanced and fair assessment of neglected tropical diseases, and for properly setting disease control priorities for these disabling diseases of poverty.”
Andrew Hyde | alfa
Could this protein protect people against coronary artery disease?
17.11.2017 | University of North Carolina Health Care
Microbial resident enables beetles to feed on a leafy diet
17.11.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für chemische Ökologie
The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.
Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...
Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.
That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...
Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.
During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....
The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.
Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...
Pillared graphene would transfer heat better if the theoretical material had a few asymmetric junctions that caused wrinkles, according to Rice University...
15.11.2017 | Event News
15.11.2017 | Event News
30.10.2017 | Event News
17.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
17.11.2017 | Health and Medicine
17.11.2017 | Studies and Analyses