Andrew Azman, Louise Ivers, Francisco Luquero and Lorenzo Pezzoli announce the launch of the PLOS Cholera Channel.
Today sees the launch of the PLOS Cholera Channel. Channels are resources for research communities: a single destination to discover and explore content from PLOS journals as well as the broader literature, supplemented by commentary, blogs, news and more to keep readers up to date with the latest research in their field.
Cholera is an acute diarrhoeal infection usually caused by ingestion of food or water contaminated with the bacterium Vibrio cholerae. With more than 1 million cases of diarrhoea and tens of thousands of deaths attributable to cholera each year, it remains a global public health threat and an indicator of inequity and lack of social development. Risk factors for the disease include poor sanitation, lack of enough clean drinking water, and poverty. While universal access to safe water and appropriate sanitation is the key to cholera prevention, global progress towards these goals has been slow. Fortunately, new global efforts to accelerate progress are underway and complimented by a new generation of oral cholera vaccines that can provide high levels of protection from cholera for at least three years.
The current outbreak of cholera in Yemen is set to become the largest cholera epidemic since records began, with estimates of 1 million cases by November. More than 2,100 Yemenis, around half of them children, have died from the disease to date and the outbreak is reckoned to be the worst humanitarian crisis facing the world today.
The Cholera Channel features articles on applied and basic research related to the global fight against cholera. It includes a wide range of topics with application to cholera prevention and control, including basic science (e.g., cholera immunology, molecular biology), epidemiologic studies, microbiologic and computational studies exploring the dynamics and spread of cholera, and applied field research on the efficacy, effectiveness and impact of cholera control programs (e.g., water and sanitation interventions, oral cholera vaccine etc.). The Channel editors will showcase the most up to date research to assist various stakeholders in the fight against cholera, including academics, healthcare workers, policy makers, implementers, patients, and civil society – all those who share a vision that collective action can stop cholera transmission and end cholera deaths through strengthened international collaboration and improved coordination amongst stakeholders active in cholera-related activities.
The Cholera Channel was developed with the Channel Editors, who will be responsible for curating the content that goes into the Channel.
Meet the Editors
Andrew Azman: I am a Research Associate in the Department of Epidemiology at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, USA where I am a core faculty member in the Infectious Disease Dynamics Group. My work focuses primarily on studying the dynamics of enteric diseases, like cholera, and ways can design more effective and efficient intervention programs against these diseases. I work closely with Médecins Sans Frontières on observational study design and general operational research with an eye towards improving cholera epidemic response. I am a member of the Global Taskforce for Cholera Control Oral Cholera Vaccine Working Group and serve as a Deputy Editor for PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases. You can find me on Twitter @andrewazman.
Louise Ivers: I am the Executive Director of the Center for Global Health at Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA. I’m an Associate Professor of Global Health and Social Medicine, and Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School in Boston. I am a medical doctor and lead health programs designed to provide access to healthcare for the poor, and I research barriers and seek solutions to healthcare delivery for the most vulnerable. I mentor students, residents and fellows in global health equity. I’m the editor of a textbook on Food Insecurity and Public Health. With my Haitian colleagues I have been implementing and researching comprehensive approaches to the elimination of transmission of cholera since a massive epidemic began there in 2010. You can find me on Twitter @drlouiseivers
Francisco Luquero: I am a medical doctor and infectious disease epidemiologist with extensive experience in low income countries. I work at Epicentre, the research branch of Médecins Sans Frontières. With my research, I seek improving public health and medical practices for the most vulnerable populations. Along with colleagues at Epicentre and Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, where I serve as Associate Scientist I have focused my work in the evaluation of the feasibility, acceptability and vaccine effectiveness of oral cholera vaccines to prevent and control cholera. Currently I provide technical expertise for the WHO in the Global Task Force for Cholera Control in the surveillance, laboratory and vaccination working groups as well as the SAGE working group on cholera vaccines.
Lorenzo Pezzoli: I am an infectious disease epidemiologist. After having completed the European Programme for Intervention Epidemiology Training (EPIET) at the Health Protection Agency Centre for Infections in London in 2008, I have developed my career working for the last 10 years in low and middle income countries. I am currently based at WHO in Geneva within the Cholera Programme where I specifically support the activities related to the use of cholera vaccine, in integration with all other interventions, in line with the new global strategy for cholera control (Ending Cholera—A Global Roadmap to 2030) launched in October 2017. You can find me on Twitter @pezzapezzi #EndCholera
Check out the PLOS Cholera Channel – channels.plos.org/cholera
Featured image: Public Domain (CDC) https://phil.cdc.gov/phil/details.asp?pid=5324
Editors note: This post has been edited to add links and make minor copyedits