|The Quest for a Leishmaniasis Vaccine:|
|History, Research, and Development|
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The Distribution of Leishmaniasis (CL, MCL,DCL, and VL) Worldwide - WHO
Every year Leishmaniasis causes 57,000 deaths and causes an estimated 1.98 million Disability Adjusted Life Years (DALY) to be lost. The WHO has estimated that 14 million people are currently infected with Leishmania and estimates that another 1.5 million people become infected with the Leishmania species that cause Cutaneous, Mucucutaneous and Diffuse cutaneous leishmaniasis each year. Furthermore, it is thought that an additional 500,000 people become infected with Visceral Leishmaniasis on an annual basis. Clearly the need for a vaccine is great, and thus it is important that the global community of health professionals and researchers strive to meet this need. The following points are important considerations that should be heeded with respect to future Leishmania vaccine research:
Safety - The vaccine should have minimal adverse side-effects
Broad and Prolonged Efficacy - The vaccine should induce an immune response in most individuals against a host of Leishmania sp.
Production - The vaccine should be easily manufacturable and should not contain animal products
Cost Effectiveness - The cost of producing and distributing the vaccine must not exceed its value
Immunotherapeutic AND Prophylactic Properties - The vaccine should not only induce immunity but should also be effective in treating Leishmaniasis.