Thirteen African Researchers Selected to #beatNTDs

KUMASI, Ghana, January 30 – Today the African Research Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases (ARNTD) announced the third cohort of the African Researchers’ Small Grants Program (SGP III). In total, thirteen researchers from seven countries were selected to receive grants that will support projects aimed at addressing neglected tropical diseases (NTDs).

“This year’s decision was no easy feat,” said John Amuasi, Executive Director of ARNTD. “We had the largest-ever pool of applicants, and from that group we selected the researchers who we believe will make the greatest impact on NTDs in their home countries.”

Following a call for proposals in August 2019, ARNTD received an unprecedented 516 applications for SGP III. The small grants program – launched in 2017 with support from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and expanded in 2019 with support from UK aid – has grown increasingly more competitive each year.

The small grants program is funded through the Coalition for Operational Research on Neglected Tropical Diseases (COR-NTD) through its grants from USAID and UK aid, via the Department for International Development (DFID). Grantees each receive up to $25,000 USD for one year to carry out research activities and support their laboratories, with an opportunity to present their findings at the annual COR-NTD meeting.

“We have been very impressed by the results that have come out of the program thus far,” said Dirk Mueller, Senior Health Advisor for DFID’s Health Research Team, “We know that these scientists will lead the charge to beat NTDs in their countries.” 

 

The selected awardees and their projects are:

 

Adam Abdul-Razak

Ghana

Factors Influencing Low Coverage of School Deworming Exercise in Two Districts in Brong Ahafo Region of Ghana: An Implementation Research Study

 

Lucy Ochola

Kenya

A portable multiplexing electrochemical metalo-immunosensor array for detection of Schistosoma cercarial antigens in polluted waters

 

Lum Abienwi Ambe

Cameroon

Characterization of potential antigenic biomarkers for the diagnosis of human onchocerciasis in urine

 

Victoria Akoth Ochwai

Kenya

Barriers to acceptance of Trachoma Trichiasis surgery among women in North Pokot Sub County in West Pokot

 

Kadu Meribo Burika

Ethiopia

Factors associated with community-directed treatment with Ivermectin non-compliance in Diediesa rural district of Ethiopia

 

Masauso Moses Phiri

Zambia

Evaluation and validation of an RDT for the diagnosis of Schistosoma hematobium and mansoni in endemic regions in Zambia

 

Arnauld Efon-Ekangouo

Cameroon

Tripartite interactions of O. volvulus, black flies and indigenous bacteria: perspectives for the development of a strategic innovative alternative for onchocerciasis control

 

Olabanji Ahmed Surakat

Nigeria

Improving accessibility and acceptability of preventive chemotherapy NTDs (PC-NTDs) for the control of Onchocerciasis and Lymphatic filariasis among physically disabled in hard to reach areas of two Local Governments in Osun State, Nigeria

 

Dieudonne Roland Ombede Eloundou

Cameroon

Schisto Score: Development of a Multivariable Prediction Model for the Diagnosis of Schistosoma haematobium infections in individuals living in hard-to-reach endemic areas around the Mapé dam, West-Cameroon

 

Chigozie Jesse Uneke

Nigeria

Implementation & evaluation of Community-Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) and WASH to strengthen the control of soil transmitted helminthiasis and schistosomiasis among school children in a rural area of Ebonyi State Nigeria

 

Mewamba Mezajou Estelle

Cameroon

Dynamics of Schistosoma mansoni populations in children treated with Praziquantel and presenting different worms burdens: its implications for disease control

 

Arthur Vengisai

Zimbabwe

Clinical utility of peptide micro-array diagnosis and surveillance of endemic and epidemic diseases in Zimbabwe

 

Alexander Kwarteng

Ghana

Stigma and Social Isolation Among People Living with Lymphatic Filariasis in Ghana through Culturally Appropriate Interventions

 

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The African Research Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases (ARNTD) is an Africa-based network that does not exclusively focus on a single NTD or theme and is composed of individuals from a variety of disciplines across health, social, and management sciences, including policymakers.

USAID is the world's premier international development agency and a catalytic actor driving development results. USAID's work advances U.S. national security and economic prosperity, demonstrates American generosity, and promotes a path to recipient self-reliance and resilience.

The Department for International Development (DFID) leads the UK’s work to end extreme poverty. DFID tackles the global challenges of our time including poverty and disease, mass migration, insecurity and conflict. This work is building a safer, healthier, more prosperous world for people in developing countries and in the UK too.

The Coalition for Operational Research on Neglected Tropical Diseases (COR-NTD) includes researchers, program implementers, and their supporters with the shared goal of optimizing the control and elimination of neglected tropical diseases. The COR-NTD secretariat is the Neglected Tropical Diseases Support Center, a program at The Task Force for Global Health in Decatur, GA, USA.