Trachoma is a bacterial disease of the eye leading to irreversible blindness and affecting nearly 2 million people worldwide. A decade of intervention has resulted in trachoma control in the majority of previously endemic regions, but progress has stalled in some difficult-to-control regions in sub-Saharan Africa. Mathematical models and clinical trials show that existing strategies will not work in these “hotspots.” Unless infection is rapidly eliminated in remaining areas, antimicrobial resistance could derail progress. Eradication of trachoma—the permanent reduction of cases to zero—is a sustainable solution that has now become achievable. We propose to use novel methods and technology to eliminate infection from these hard-to-treat regions. Through intensified and more frequent treatment, we will eliminate infection among “super-spreaders” to prevent further transmission. Finally, we will build new global labs for monitoring and rapid case detection. Through this new approach, we will eradicate trachoma forever.
UCSF Proctor Foundation for Research in Ophthalmologywebsite: https://www.ucsf.edu/
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