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INTRODUCTION: Visceral leishmaniasis (VL) is a parasitic disease with an estimated 30 000 new cases occurring annually. There is an observed variation in the efficacy of the current first-line therapies across different regions. Such heterogeneity could be a function of host, parasite and drug factors. An individual participant data meta-analysis (IPD-MA) is planned to explore the determinants of treatment outcomes. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: The Infectious Diseases Data Observatory (IDDO) VL living systematic review (IDDO VL LSR) library is an open-access resource of all published therapeutic studies in VL since 1980. For this current review, the search includes all clinical trials published between 1 January 1980 and 2 May 2021. Studies indexed in the IDDO VL LSR library were screened for eligibility for inclusion in this IPD-MA. Corresponding authors and principal investigators of the studies meeting the eligibility criteria for inclusion were invited to be part of the collaborative IPD-MA. Authors agreeing to participate in this collaborative research were requested to share the IPD using the IDDO VL data platform. The IDDO VL data platform currently holds data sets from clinical trials standardised to a common data format and provides a unique opportunity to identify host, parasite and drug determinants of treatment outcomes. Multivariable regression models will be constructed to identify determinants of therapeutic outcomes using generalised linear mixed-effects models accounting for within-study site clustering. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: This IPD-MA meets the criteria for waiver of ethical review as defined by the Oxford Tropical Research Ethics Committee (OxTREC) granted to IDDO, as the research consists of secondary analysis of existing anonymised data (Exempt granted on 29 March 2023, OxTREC REF: IDDO) Ethics approval was granted by the ICMR-Rajendra Memorial Research Institute of Medical Sciences ethics committee (Letter no: RMRI/EC/30/2022) on 04-07-2022. The results of this IPD-MA will be disseminated at conferences, IDDO website and any peer-reviewed publications. All publications will be open source. Findings of this research will be critically important for the control programmes at regional/global levels, policy makers and groups developing new VL treatments. PROSPERO REGISTRATION: CRD42021284622.

Original publication




Journal article


BMJ Open

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Epidemiology, INFECTIOUS DISEASES, Neglected Diseases, PUBLIC HEALTH, Tropical medicine, Humans, Animals, Parasites, Leishmaniasis, Visceral, Treatment Outcome, Systematic Reviews as Topic, Meta-Analysis as Topic