Yaws and new projects in the Solomon Islands

Thursday, 31 March, 2016

The disease yaws is mostly a disease of children who live in poor, rural settings in the topics. Yaws is caused by the bacterium Treponema pertenue. Yaws is a forgotten disease (WHO 2016). Solomon Islands reports the second highest number of cases of yaws worldwide (Marks 2015). THS in its role supporting the Atoifi Health Research Group (AHRG) is delighted to have the opportunity to work on controlling yaws with Dr Michael Marks of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM). A partnership has now been sealed between AHRG and LSHTM to conduct several projects on yaws and develop other research interests.

At the upcoming research capacity building workshop at Atoifi in April (18th-21st) details of the yaws projects will be finalised with projects planned to commence in July. One project will test the benefit of community-wide use of ivermectin and azithromycin on yaws, skin sores and scabies. Another will assess the clinicians' and patients' views on a rapid diagnostic test for syphilis and yaws.

THS is rather excited by the potential of this partnership. The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine is one of the world's great tropical medicine institutions!

Further detail are reported at the AHRG website - http://www.atoifiresearch.org.sb/node/129.

Image: Dr Michael Marks chatting to a group of children in the Solomon Islands.

Marks M, Vahi V, Sokana O, Puiahi E, Pavluck A, Zhang Z, Dalipanda T, Bottomley C, Mabey DC, Solomon AW. Mapping the epidemiology of yaws in the Solomon Islands: A cluster randomized survey. American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 2015:92(1):129-133.

World Health Organization. Yaws: A forgotten disease. 2016. http://www.who.int/neglected_diseases/diseases/yaws/en/