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New child-adapted Chagas disease treatment approved for registration
Date:12/2/2011

This release is available in Portuguese and Spanish.

Rio de Janeiro and Recife, Brazil, and Geneva, Switzerland 2 December 2011 -- Today, at the occasion of the 4th DNDi Partners' Meeting in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Dr Carlos Gadelha, Secretary of Science, Technology and Strategic Products, Brazilian Ministry of Health, announced that Brazil's National Health Surveillance Agency (ANVISA) granted registration of a new paediatric dosage form of benznidazole, developed through a partnership between the Pernambuco State Pharmaceutical Laboratory (LAFEPE) of Brazil and the Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi). Registration of this child-adapted formulation of benznidazole will be published on 12 December 2011.

This new tablet means easier-to-administer and safer treatment of Chagas disease in infants and young children under the age of two, as they will receive accurate dosage.

Until today, benznidazole was available only as a 100-mg tablet for adults. Treatment for young children required cutting adult pills into tiny slivers up to 12 pieces depending on the child's weight and crushing and mixing them with water or juice, to be administered twice a day for 60 days. This difficult and inefficient method often results in improper dosing, risks of increased side-effects or ineffective treatment, and treatment stoppages.

Chagas disease infects an estimated 8 to 10 million people, mostly in Latin America, and kills some 12,000 people each year, making it the leading parasitic killer in the Americas, where it causes more deaths than malaria. The Chagas parasite is primarily transmitted via the bite of the blood-sucking triatome bug, widely known as the 'kissing bug', which is often found in poor housing conditions. In addition to blood transfusio
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Contact: Oliver Yun
oyun@dndi.org
646-266-5216
Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative
Source:Eurekalert

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