Modelling for Taenia solium control strategies beyond 2020

Dixon, M A and Braae, U C and Winskill, P and Devleesschauwer, B and Trevisan, C and Van Damme, I and Walker, M and Hamley, J I D and Ramiandrasoa, S N and Schmidt, V and Gabriël, S and Harrison, W and Basáñez, M-G (2020) Modelling for Taenia solium control strategies beyond 2020. Bulletin of the World Health Organization, 98 (3). pp. 198-205. ISSN 0042-9686

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The cestode Taenia solium is responsible for a considerable cross-sectoral health and economic burden due to human neurocysticercosis and porcine cysticercosis. The 2012 World Health Organization (WHO) roadmap for neglected tropical diseases called for the development of a validated strategy for control of T. solium; however, such a strategy is not yet available. In 2019, WHO launched a global consultation aimed at refining the post-2020 targets for control of T. solium for a new roadmap for neglected tropical diseases. In response, two groups working on taeniasis and cysticercosis mathematical models (cystiSim and EPICYST models), together with a range of other stakeholders organized a workshop to provide technical input to the WHO consultation and develop a research plan to support efforts to achieve the post-2020 targets. The workshop led to the formation of a collaboration, CystiTeam, which aims to tackle the population biology, transmission dynamics, epidemiology and control of T. solium through mathematical modelling approaches. In this paper, we outline developments in T. solium control and in particular the use of modelling to help achieve post-2020 targets for control of T. solium. We discuss the steps involved in improving confidence in the predictive capacities of existing mathematical and computational models on T. solium transmission, including model comparison, refinement, calibration and validation. Expanding the CystiTeam partnership to other research groups and stakeholders, particularly those operating in different geographical and endemic areas, will enhance the prospects of improving the applicability of T. solium transmission models to inform taeniasis and cysticercosis control strategies.