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World Malaria Day 2016: joining forces to end malaria

25 April 2016

There has been remarkable progress made in malaria control based on current World health Organisation estimates. Nonetheless, there is still much to be done in the fight against malaria in malaria prevention, diagnostic testing and treatment. The European & Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP) supports malaria research in sub-Saharan African countries by funding clinical trials conducted by African-European research partnerships, as well as strengthening individual and institutional capacities to conduct trials. Since 2003, EDCTP has financed 42 malaria grants in malaria prevention, diagnostic testing and treatment. EDCTP, now in its second programme, is committed to continue working in partnership in a joint effort geared towards ending malaria.

EDCTP-funded malaria research (2003-2015)

EDCTP’s funding strategy for malaria during its first programme focused on clinical issues of particular relevance to sub-Saharan Africa, such as treatment and prevention of malaria in special populations. These studies are highly challenging to conduct but generate highly needed and valuable evidence to guide treatment policy that involve vulnerable populations.

EDCTP funded research - malaria 2015

The portfolio of malaria projects comprised 34 trials which have contributed to policy and regulatory approvals. WANECAM provided evidence to support the European Medicines Agency approval of Pyramax® (fixed dose combination of artesunate and pyronaridine) label extension for repeated treatment of uncomplicated malaria and Pyramax® granules as a paediatric formulation.

The 4ABC trial provided safety and efficacy data to guide treatment of uncomplicated malaria in children.

The ADAPT trial provided data on which antimalarials are safe to use in HIV-positive individuals.

Five clinical trials investigated the prevention and treatment of malaria in pregnancy, including the PREGACT trial, which provided data to inform the World Health Organisation (WHO) malaria treatment guidelines.

The five grants on vaccine trials tested promising candidates, at the same time improving capacity and establishing infrastructure to conduct phase I trials and controlled human malaria infection studies in Africa.

Malaria research funding under the second EDCTP programme

EDCTP now funds a wider range of research on malaria in its second programme. The EDCTP calls for proposals are now applicable to all diseases within the scope of EDCTP, namely HIV, tuberculosis, malaria and other poverty-related and neglected infectious diseases in sub-Saharan Africa. This approach creates more frequent funding opportunities for clinical malaria research.

Since the start of the second programme, EDCTP has launched calls for proposals worth approximately €102M* in research against poverty-related and neglected infectious diseases.

EDCTP’s research priorities for 2016, among other areas, will include calls for proposals focussing on vaccines for poverty-related diseases, and clinical trials and operational studies to optimise the use of products for poverty-related diseases in mothers, new-borns, children and adolescents. More details about these calls for proposals and other activities will be published in 2016, when the EDCTP workplan for 2016 is approved.

 

*Indicative contributions towards calls for proposals launched in 2014 and 2015.

This messages was updated for clarity on 26 April 2016.