Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT), also known as sleeping sickness, is a neglected disease that impacts 70 million people distributed over 1.55 million km2 in sub-Saharan Africa. Trypanosoma brucei gambiense accounts for almost 90% of the infections in central and western Africa, the remaining infections being from T. b. rhodesiense in eastern Africa. Furthermore, the animal diseases caused by related parasites inflict major economic losses to countries already strained. The parasites are transmitted to the mammalian hosts through the bite of an infected tsetse fly. Know More:

Insects are the pre-eminent form of metazoan life on land, with as many as 1018 individuals alive at any one instant and over three-quarters of a million species described. Although it is estimated that there are as many as 14,000 species that are blood feeders, only three to 400 species regularly attract our attention. Some of these are of immense importance to us, as vector-borne diseases still form a huge burden on both the human population and our domesticated animals.

Vector-borne diseases (VBDs) are some of the world's most common and devastating maladies. Despite this truth, the United States government had decided to drastically cut funding for the Division of Vector-Borne Infectious Diseases (DVBID) program of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the Fiscal Year 2011 Labor, Health and Human Services and Education appropriations bill.