• In Africa, at least one million pregnancies are co-infected with malaria and HIV annually.

    In Africa, at least one million pregnancies are co-infected with malaria and HIV annually.

News/Events

Today, a first public version of a knowledge tool for research data sharing was presented at the EDCTP Forum. It was developed by a team from The Global Health Network. The session aimed to introduce the tool to an audience of clinical researchers and to receive as much feedback from them as possible.

Dr Michael Makanga, EDCTP Executive Director, introduced this EDCTP-funded project. Open data sharing, in general, is seen more and more as a key factor for progress in many areas. From banking to climate change, data and know-how are shared in professional fields to make faster progress by learning best practices and housing better data.

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The welcoming session at a large conference is important in setting the pace for the remainder of the event. The Ninth Forum got off to a fine start on Monday evening, as it contained not only welcome messages from our Portuguese hosts, important updates on the progress of EDCTP and some inspiring keynote addresses, but also music and prizes!

Michael Makanga welcomed delegates and thanked both our hosts and the sponsoring organisations, before giving an outline of the scope of the presentations, discussions, workshops and plenary sessions that will be taking place. He announced that EDCTP´s fora will continue to be held every two years, but will in future alternate between African and European venues.

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Clinical research and sustainable development in sub-Saharan Africa: the impact of North-South partnerships
The EDCTP Forum is a biennial event that provides an international platform for the presentation and discussion of frontier research to address the burden of poverty-related infectious diseases in sub-Saharan Africa, and also capacity development and networking activities to support these goals.

The EDCTP Forum attracts a diverse audience, including representatives from research institutions and universities, the larger scientific community, health care providers, governments, regional bodies, regulators, civil society and public and private research and development partners.

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A cost-effective intervention for preventing maternal and newborn mortality
Plasmodium falciparum malaria during pregnancy can result in negative outcomes in maternal and child health. In malaria stable transmission areas in Africa, approximately 25 million pregnancies are exposed every year to the infection. An estimated 10,000 of these women and 200,000 of their infants die as a result of malaria infection during pregnancy, and severe malarial anaemia contributes to more than half of these deaths.

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Recently, the causal relationship between prenatal Zika virus infection and microcephaly and other serious brain anomalies has been confirmed. This outbreak represents a global health emergency of devastating consequences for maternal and foetal health. Currently, Zika virus cases have been documented in a total of 75 countries and territories.

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On December 13, the WHO released the World Malaria Report 2016, an annual report that tracks the progress and trends in malaria control and elimination at a global, regional and national level. Using data from 91 countries with malaria transmission and the help of numerous partners, the report indicates that children and pregnant women in sub-Saharan Africa have greater access to effective tools against malaria. “The news are very positive” says Clara Menéndez, director of the Maternal, Child and Reproductive Health Initiative at ISGlobal, “first, because it affects two of the most vulnerable populations to malaria in the world, African children and pregnant women, and secondly, because it reflects that a collaborative effort between ministries of health and many partners is possible and may achieve positive results.”

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This project is aimed to develop new anti-malarial drugs in pregnancy prevention, promote European and African research collaboration and strengthen the research capacity of African institutions
Malaria in Pregnancy (MiP) is one of the most important preventable causes of low birth weight deliveries worldwide and a major cause of severe maternal anaemia contributing to maternal mortality. To find effective preventive interventions to reduce the incidence and consequences of malaria infection in pregnant women is a priority in endemic countries. As part of the planned activities of the Malaria in Pregnancy consortium, a global initiative bringing together a research consortium of 40 partner institutions in 28 countries around the world, this project aims not only to develop new anti-malaria in pregnancy prevention but also to promote European and to African research collaboration and to strengthen the capacity of African institutions to conduct clinical research..”

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