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Accelerating towards human African trypanosomiasis elimination: Issues and opportunities

1 Department of Zoology and Environmental Biology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
2 Department of Veterinary Parasitology and Entomology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
3 Central Laboratory Unit, Federal University Wukari, Wukari, Taraba State Nigeria, Nigeria
4 Department of Biology, Federal University of Technology Owerre Imo State, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Kingsley Uchenna Ozioko,
Parasitology and Public Health, Department of Zoology and Environmental Biology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0972-9062.310860

Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) has been an alarming global public health issue. The disease affects mainly poor and marginalized people in low-resource settings and is caused by two subspecies of haemoflagellate parasite, Trypanosoma brucei and transmitted by tsetse flies. Progress made in HAT control during the past decade has prompted increasing global dialogue on its elimination and eradication. The disease is targeted by the World Health Organization (WHO) for elimination as a public health problem by 2020 and to terminate its transmission globally by 2030, along-side other Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTD). Several methods have been used to control tsetse flies and the disease caused by them. Old and new tools to control the disease are available with constraints. Currently, there are no vaccines available. Efforts towards intervention to control the disease over the past decade have seen considerable progress and remarkable success with incidence dropping progressively, reversing the upward trend of reported cases. This gives credence in a real progress in its elimination. This study reviews various control measures, progress and a highlight of control issues, vectors and parasite barriers that may have been hindering progress towards its elimination.

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