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Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative

The Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative (DNDi) is a not-for-profit drug development organization focused on improving the health and quality of life of people suffering from neglected diseases. Because these diseases predominantly afflict the very poor, existing systems and market mechanisms do not provide an adequate incentive for research and development. The organization was founded in 2003 by Médecins Sans Frontières and five public-sector research organizations - Kenya Medical Research Institute, Indian Council of Medical Research, Malaysian Ministry of Health, Oswaldo Cruz Foundation in Brazil, and France's Institut Pasteur. WHO/TDR serves as a permanent observer to the initiative.

DNDi’s primary goals are to:

  1. Develop new field-relevant treatments for people suffering from neglected diseases;
  2. Raise awareness through advocacy on research and development of drugs for neglected diseases; and
  3. Strengthen existing research capacity in countries where neglected diseases are endemic.

The organization is using a "needs-driven" portfolio-based approach that facilitates basic science, preclinical, and clinical research on targeted diseases. Current DNDi projects are focused on parasitic diseases, including human African trypanosomiasis, leishmaniasis, Chagas disease, and malaria.

The concept of a not-for-profit public/private research partnership to develop medicines for neglected diseases originated in a 1985 study by Hellen Gelband (Takoma Park, Maryland) for the US Congressional Office of Technology Assessment. She and George R. Tyler (Deputy Assistant Secretary, US Treasury) proposed the DNDi concept to Medicins sans Frontieres in 2000. The concept was adopted and expanded under the direction and support of Dr. Bernard Pecoul (DNDi Geneva), Dr. James Orbenski (University of Toronto) and Dr. Yves Champey (Paris).

On March 1st 2007, DNDi, in partnership with Sanofi-Aventis, announce a new formula, ASAQ, against malaria.[1]

See also


  • Pécoul, B. (2004) New drugs for neglected diseases: from pipeline to patients. PLoS Med 1(1), e6 (doi: 10.1371/journal.pmed.0010006).
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Drugs_for_Neglected_Diseases_Initiative". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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