London: 18 April 2018 -Today, at the London Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, the world’s leading Crop Protection companies announce their commitment to support the research, development and supply of innovative products to save lives and help eradicate malaria by 2040.
BASF, Bayer, Mitsui Chemicals, Sumitomo Chemical Company and Syngenta have been the major driving force behind the development of innovative vector control solutions, such as bednets and indoor spraying. Since 2000, nearly 4 in every 5 malaria cases successfully averted through intervention have been due to long-lasting insecticide treated bednets (LLINs) and indoor residual spraying (IRS), saving millions of lives.
In coming together under the ‘ZERO by 40’ banner, these companies are, with the support of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Liverpool based IVCC (the Innovative Vector Control Consortium), reaffirming their commitment to use their expert knowledge and chemical resources to supply and develop innovative vector control solutions to help reduce the malaria burden, which today is increasingly being threatened by insecticide resistance.
In 2005 these companies opened up their chemical libraries to IVCC to support the search for new chemistry to help address the danger of insecticide resistance. As a result, a strong pipeline of innovative solutions is beginning to emerge. Recent successes include:
- In 2016 Actellic®300CS, a next generation IRS developed by Syngenta, was introduced into the NgenIRS programme, a 4-year $65.1 million UNITAID-funded market shaping initiative, now stretching across 14 African countries.
- This was joined in 2017 by Sumitomo Chemical’s SumiShield® 50WG, a brand-new mode of action chemistry for indoor residual spraying, to enable improved resistance management through rotation.
- Bayer’s next generation IRS product combining two modes of action, Fludora® Fusion, is currently undergoing final stage trials required for WHO prequalification and is expected to join the fight in preventing disease transmission for millions of people across sub-Saharan Africa.
- In 2017, BASF received a WHO interim recommendation for Interceptor® G2, a new generation mosquito net developed using a repurposed insecticide (chlorfenapyr) from agriculture to help combat resistant mosquitoes.
- Mitsui Chemicals, which has a long history in the field of vector control, is developing unique mode of action insecticides across a wide range of product applications such as sprays and bednets.
Nick Hamon, CEO of IVCC said “Our industry collaboration, supported by our funders including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the UK’s Department of International Development (DFID), is starting to bear fruit and is saving lives today. But we still have a long way to go to achieve our ambition of ending the disease burden of malaria by 2040. This new initiative will not only secure the current supply of solutions, but will pave the way for desperately needed new forms of chemistry and new vector control tools to reduce the disease burden of malaria which still affects millions of people.”
Saori Dubourg, Member of the Board of Executive Directors, BASF SE, said “Next Wednesday is World Malaria Day, but for half of our world, every day is a fight against this devastating disease. Malaria causes sickness and death, reduces productivity, fuels poverty and creates hunger, especially in impoverished, rural farming communities. ZERO by 40 will connect the smartest minds in public health and science, and I am truly optimistic that it will be a force for change. We can be the generation to end malaria.”
Dr. Jacqueline M. Applegate, Member of the Crop Science Executive Committee & President of Environmental Science of Bayer AG, said “The magnitude and global reach of the disease requires the engagement of all major stakeholders to work together if we are to achieve our bold and ambitious goal of ending the malaria burden within a generation. The declaration signed today with our industry partners confirms the willingness to mobilize our diverse know-how and resources. At Bayer, we are committed to using science and innovation to improve people’s lives and are very proud to be a signee of this declaration.”
Kazunori Tani, Executive adviser of Mitsui Chemicals Agro, Inc. said “Through our continued dedication to innovation in organic chemistry technology, Mitsui Chemicals has discovered novel insecticides that effectively control mosquitos resistant to existing chemicals. With our new technologies, we are proud to contribute to the eradication of Malaria, one of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the United Nations.”
Ray Nishimoto, Representative Director & Senior Managing Executive Officer and President of Health & Crop Sciences Sector, Sumitomo Chemical added “Sumitomo Chemical was founded with the precept that to succeed in the long run, business activities must benefit society. This core value is the basis of our long-standing commitment to continuously develop innovative vector control technologies that will help end malaria for good. On the occasion of the Malaria Summit London 2018, Sumitomo Chemical is proud to join in the Vector Control Malaria Declaration, alongside other leading crop protection companies, and to confirm that we will continue to innovate and invest to bring new vector control solutions to market until malaria is ultimately eradicated.”
Erik Fyrwald, Syngenta CEO said “The WHO reported that in 2016 445,000 people died from Malaria and around 216 million people were infected so we all have a responsibility to help fight this terrible disease. We are here today to reinforce our commitment in the fight against Malaria and we will work closely to IVCC, and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the companies of our industry to eradicate it.”
Commenting on the initiative, Trevor Mundel, President of Global Health at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, said “Innovative vector control is essential to the success of malaria control and elimination efforts. It’s proven key to saving millions of lives over the past 15 years. That’s why we’re pleased that the companies that have played such an essential role in delivering innovation are extending their commitments to help end malaria for good. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is pleased to support IVCC and its private-sector partners in their efforts to accelerate the discovery and development of new insecticides for public health.”