Authors' Reply

  • Peter J Hotez mail,

    Affiliation: The George Washington University, Washington, D. C, United States of America

  • Albert B Sabin,

    Affiliation: Vaccine Institute, Washington, D. C, United States of America

  • David H Molyneux,

    Affiliation: Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, Liverpool, United Kingdom

  • Alan Fenwick,

    Affiliations: Imperial College London, London, United Kingdom, Schistosomiasis Control Initiative, London, United Kingdom

  • Eric Ottesen,

    Affiliations: Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, United States of America, Lymphatic Filariasis Support Center, Atlanta, Georgia, United States of America

  • Sonia Ehrlich Sachs,
  • Jeffrey D Sachs

    Affiliation: Columbia University, New York, New York, United States of America

  • Published: April 25, 2006
  • DOI: 10.1371/journal.pmed.0030207

Damian Walker and Godfrey Walker [1] make a strong case for adding congenital syphilis to our proposed list of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). Indeed, we would hasten to add all of the major treponemal infections—including yaws, endemic syphilis (bejel), and pinta—could potentially qualify as NTDs. Leptospirosis and bartonellosis might also qualify as important neglected bacterial infections, while amoebiasis is an important yet neglected protozoan infection. Therefore, it is possible that in the future our list of 13–15 NTDs could expand to approximately 20 conditions. In the meantime, we are working to establish a set of consensus guidelines for this important list of NTDs.


  1. 1. Walker D, Walker G (2006) Syphilis: A forgotten priority. PLoS Med 3: e204. doi: 10.1371/journal.pmed.0030204.