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Preface In 2006, I became the founding editor in chief of PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases, a then new journal for a growing community of scientists and public health experts committed to studying the neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). As part of the Public Library of Science, PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases was the first open access journal exclusively devoted to NTDs. A few years ago, I was joined by Yale University’s Dr. Serap Aksoy as co–editor in chief, together with a distinguished group of deputy editors and associate editors working all over the world. We have benefited from the able guidance of the PLOS staff based in San Francisco, including Jeri Wright, Alicia Zuniga, Catherine Nancarrow, and Dr. Larry Peiperl. One of the surprises about our journal over this past decade has been the number of papers we received from scientists in middle-­­ income countries , especially the BRICS—Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. Moreover, the papers discussed findings from studies that went beyond the poorest and most destitute nations in the world. I became deeply impressed with the number of papers reporting on disease findings in middle-­­ income countries, and even in some high-­income countries. This observation, combined with my personal experiences after moving to Texas and seeing firsthand the endemic neglected tropical diseases, inspired me to look more deeply into the problem of the health disparities of the poor who live in the midst of wealth. I first wrote about the concept of “blue marble health” in both Foreign Policy and PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases in 2013, with subsequent articles in 2015. Nathaniel Gore, together with Dr. Peiperl, also created two PLOS collections of articles devoted to blue marble health. Hotez.indb 11 6/22/16 11:02 AM xii Preface Many of the findings in this book are based on data and information published in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases by a wide range of investigators . These articles are cited in the text and then listed by chapter at the end of the book. Another important source of data is the Preventive Chemotherapy and Transmission Control Databank of the World Health Organization and its Department of Neglected Tropical Diseases, previously headed by my friend and colleague Dr. Lorenzo Savioli, and now under the direction of Dr. Dirk Engels. Also essential for our findings on blue marble health are data from the Global Burden of Disease Study led by Dr. Christopher J. L. Murray, who heads the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington in Seattle. My colleagues at the Department of State and White House and their US Science Envoy program also provided a fresh perspective on the geopolitics of diseases and science and health diplomacy. They included Undersecretary Catherine Novelli, White House Science Advisor Dr. John Holdren, Assistant Secretary Judith Garber, Deputy Assistant Secretary Dr. Jonathan Margolis, Dr. Bruce Ruscio, Dr. Matthew West, Kimberly Coleman, Stephanie Hutchison, Kay Hairston, Daisy Dix, Amani Mekki, Patricia Hill, Douglas Apostol, Christopher Rich, and Kia Henry. Prof. Neal Lane at Rice University ’s Baker Institute has also been an important mentor. I also want to thank our many donors and partners who make it possible for us to develop new vaccines and other innovations for neglected diseases among the poor. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, and the Fogarty International Center of the National Institutes of Health got us started, while today our new partners include Texas Children’s Hospital, the Carlos Slim Foundation, the Kleberg Foundation, Dr. Gary Michelson and the Michelson Medical Research Foundation, Len Benkenstein and the Southwest Electronic Energy Medical Research Institute, the Dutch government and its Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the European Union and the Amsterdam Institute of Global Health and Development, the Brazilian Ministry of Health, and the Japanese GHIT Fund. I am especially grateful to Nathaniel Wolf, who helps me on editorial matters at the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine. In addition to being a great sounding board and adviser on editorial issues, Nathaniel took on the important role of obtaining permissions for reproducing many of the figures for this book and working closely with Hotez.indb 12 6/22/16 11:02 AM Preface xiii our publisher. The photographer Anna Grove also contributed unique pictures of Houston’s Fifth Ward. I also want to thank Dr. Jennifer Herricks, my first and only postdoctoral fellow in public policy, for helping me to create and shape the...


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