by Colebunders R, Mandro M, Njamnshi AK, Boussinesq M, Hotterbeekx A, Kamgno J, O’Neill S, Hopkins A, Suykerbuyk P, Basáñez MG, Post RJ, Pedrique B, Preux PM, Stolk WA, Nutman TB, and Idro R. Infectious Diseases of Poverty 2018, 7(23). doi 10.1186/s40249-018-0400-0
Summary: Recent research findings strongly suggest that O. volvulus is an important contributor to epilepsy, particularly in meso- and hyperendemic areas for onchocerciasis. On October 12–14th 2017, the first international workshop on onchocerciasis-associated epilepsy (OAE) was held in Antwerp, Belgium. Multidisciplinary working groups discussed a number of topics, including strengthening the evidence for an association between onchocerciasis and epilepsy, determining the burden of disease caused by OAE and dealing with misconceptions, stigma, discrimination, and gender violence. An OAE Alliance was created to increase awareness about OAE and its public health importance, stimulate research, disseminate research findings, and create partnerships between OAE researchers, communities, advocacy groups, ministries of health, non-governmental organizations, the pharmaceutical industry, and funding organizations.