A step closer to oral administration of kala-azar drug

  1. Researchers from IIT Hyderabad have achieved a sustained release of a drug known as Amphotericin B for up to 10 days.This drug can be used for treating kala-azar.
  2. This will also help in oral administration of kala-azar drug which currently has major challenges.
  3. Visceral leishmaniasis(VL) also known as kala-azar is the most severe form of leishmaniasis.The disease without any proper diagnosis and treatment has been associated with high fatality.
  4. The disease is caused by protozoan parasites of the Leishmania genus, which migrates to the internal organs such as the liver,spleen (hence “visceral”) and bone marrow.
  5. The signs and symptoms include fever, weight loss, fatigue, anemia and substantial swelling of the liver and spleen.
  6. Kala Azar is endemic to the Indian subcontinent primarily in four countries namely Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Nepal.Further,India itself accounts for half the global burden of the disease.
  7. Under National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme(NVBDCP), Government of India is coordinating with endemic States to eliminate the disease.
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