Supplemental issue



Accelerating Innovation to Impact:

Learning from Triple-Drug Therapy (IDA)

for Lymphatic Filariasis and from Other Innovations



This supplement is focused on sharing learnings from successful innovations to reflect on and document elements that are frequently overlooked in the published literature.  We will, first, recognize and analyze in detail the recently developed and newly deployed treatment for LF: IDA Triple Drug Therapy (ivermectin, DEC, and albendazole); then review the experience and lessons learned from the development of other innovations that include a vaccine, a diagnostic, and a novel therapeutic.  From these examples we end with a conceptual framework for consideration to accelerate introduction and scale-up of future innovations to contribute to achieving the WHO 2030 NTD Roadmap targets and the SDGs more broadly.



The supplement was coordinated by Bridges to Development with funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The team would like to thank the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation for their generous funding support which has made it possible to gather and share these stories chronicling the accelerated delivery of new innovations in global health including the introduction of triple-drug therapy for lymphatic filariasis. We also would like to thank guest editor, Eric Ottesen, for his keen and confident direction, insights, and timely support in moving along all of the contributions through the peer-review process. The authors themselves must be acknowledged, firstly for their roles in the projects bringing new innovations in global health to those who would benefit from them as well as for the time and energy put into writing these articles to share lessons learned which we hope will help accelerate future innovations in global health. We would also like to acknowledge Nicole Vecchio for coordinating the process with and providing support for the authors on behalf of Bridges to Development. Finally, we would like to acknowledge the excellent and dedicated editorial team at the AJTMH, especially Phil Rosenthal, Cathi Siegel, and Alison Jaeb.





"This supplement is meant to go beyond where usual publications go, showing the key elements to accelerate progress for impact by getting new innovations to populations in need.  These elements are not included in most scientific publications but deserve attention and forethought if we are going to get better at what we do and how we do it to better serve the communities we are trying to reach.  We hope that reflecting on these examples will help us all improve efficiency and accelerate impact.” – Julie Jacobson, MD, DTMH, FASTMH, Managing Partner, Bridges to Development and 2021 ASTMH President



"This supplement addresses the challenging public health transition from research innovation to programmatic impact. It focuses on implementation of mass drug administration (MDA) with three drugs, which has offered a major advance in efforts to eliminate lymphatic filariasis, and it addresses other public health programs that have contributed to or built upon successes with MDA.” – Philip Rosenthal, MD, FASTMH, Editor-in-Chief, American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene




We dedicate this supplement to the memory of Dr. Mwelecele Ntuli Malecela, Director, WHO, Department of Control of Neglected Tropical Diseases. This supplement documents examples of the best practices and vital problem solving that were exemplified by Mwele. Her determined, no-nonsense, get it done and do it right the first time approach was an inspiration. I recently heard her described as “warm but fierce”, which I think is a perfect description. She was kind and compassionate, focused on the people her work served, and fierce in her fight to get them what they needed. I hope that we can all learn from her dedication and determination to decrease suffering from NTDs and lead the way forward to a world free of these treatable and preventable afflictions. Thank you for all the lessons, my friend. - Julie Jacobson





In order to provide our readers with timely access to new content, papers accepted by the American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene are posted online ahead of print publication. Papers that have been accepted for publication are peer-reviewed and copy edited but do not incorporate all corrections or constitute the final versions that will appear in the Journal. Final, corrected papers will be published online concurrent with the release of the print issue.


The role of innovation in delivering the 2021–2030 NTD road map

Mwelecele Ntuli Malecela



Foreword: Towards Accelerating Tool Development for Global Health

Eric A. Ottesen



Compressing the Timelines for Development and Delivery: Accelerating Access to Triple-Drug Therapy to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis

Julie Jacobson



Lessons from Large-Scale Tolerability and Acceptability Studies of Triple Drug Mass Drug Administration Performed to Support Policy Change and Accelerate Elimination of Lymphatic Filariasis

Gary J. Weil, Peter U. Fischer, and Alison Krentel



Country Reports on Practical Aspects of Conducting Large-Scale Community Studies of the Tolerability of Mass Drug Administration with Ivermectin/Diethylcarbamazine/Albendazole for Lymphatic Filariasis

Purushothaman Jambulingam, Swaminathan Subramanian, Kaliannagounder Krishnamoorthy, Taniawati Supali, Peter Fischer, Christine Dubray, Carl Fayette, Jean Frantz Lemoine, Moses Laman, Christopher King, Josaia Samuela, Myra Hardy, and Gary J. Weil



Accelerating the Uptake of WHO Recommendations for Mass Drug Administration Using Ivermectin, Diethylcarbamazine, and Albendazole

Jonathan D. King, Julie Jacobson,  and Alison Krentel



Introduction of Triple-Drug Therapy for Accelerating Lymphatic Filariasis Elimination in India: Lessons Learned

Bhupendra Tripathi, Nupur Roy, and Neeraj Dhingra



The Importance of Partnership in the Rollout of Triple-Drug Therapy to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis in the Pacific

Merelesita Rainima-Qaniuci, Hansell Blanche Lepaitai, Rasul Bhagirov, Eswara Padmasiri, Take Naseri, Robert Thomsen, Kimberly Y. Won, Tara A. Brant, Emily Dodd,  Motusa Tuileama Nua, Fara Utu, Aifili Tufa, Emi Chutaro, Janet Camacho, Lynette Suiaunoa-Scanlan, Li Jun Thean, Jyotishna Mani, Myra Hardy, Josaia Samuela, Lucia Romani,  John Kaldor, Andrew C. Steer, Daniel Faktaufon, Vinaisi Bechu,  Flora Naqio, Vine Sosene, Makoto Sekihara, Junko Otaki, Tamara S. Buhagiar, and Aya Yajima



Lessons Learned from the Japanese Encephalitis Vaccine Introduction in India That Supported the Introduction of Ivermectin–Diethylcarbamazine–Albendazole for Lymphatic Filariasis Elimination

Raj Shankar Ghosh, Pradeep Haldar, and Julie Jacobson



Development and Introduction of the Filariasis Test Strip: A New Diagnostic Test for the Global Program to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis

Anastasia Pantelias, Jonathan D. King, Patrick Lammie, and Gary J. Weil



Development and Introduction of Fexinidazole into the Global Human African Trypanosomiasis Program

Olaf Valverde Mordt, Antoine Tarral, and Nathalie Strub-Wourgaft



Reflections on “Orchestrating for Impact”: Harmonizing across Stakeholders to Accelerate Global Health Gains

Julie Jacobson and Alan Brooks