For years, little was known of the typhoid burden in Africa, even though outbreaks of multi-drug resistant typhoid is becoming increasingly common. This lack of information spurred the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to fund the Typhoid Fever Surveillance in Africa Program (TSAP) through the International Vaccine Institute, a first-of-its-kind study established to shed light on true extent of the typhoid burden and multi-drug resistance distribution on the continent. The results from the TSAP, recently published in the Lancet Global Health, represent the most comprehensive and rigorous analysis of typhoid in Africa and could change our understanding of the disease burden across the continent.

Vaccines are healthcare’s first line of defense. From polio to pertussis, rubella to rotavirus, vaccination has saved more lives than any other medical advance in recent history.

Global health research and development has a multiplier effect. It not only saves and improves lives, but also creates cost savings, drives economic growth and enhances global security.

Last night, Dr. Jan Holmgren received the 24th annual Albert B. Sabin Gold Medal Award in honor of his pioneering work in mucosal immunology and leadership in the development the world’s first oral cholera vaccine. Guests gathered at the National Academy of Sciences building in Washington, D.C., under a mural of Prometheus inscribed “hearken to the miseries that beset mankind” – a fitting setting for the celebration of a career spent fighting an ancient disease of the poor.

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