Call for innovation and integrated approaches for malaria eradication

TDR news item
30 November 2017

A malaria eradication research agenda has been published in PLOS Medicine. The 7 papers are the output of a broad consultation that involved more than 180 scientists, malaria programme leaders and policy-makers, including experts trained by TDR.

Malaria glass artwork by Luke Jerram
Graphic design by Rachel Papernick

The special issue calls for new solutions that require 3 types of innovation: 1) iterative innovation such as new medicines); 2) transformative innovation of tools and strategies to reduce or halt parasite transmission such as gene drive technologies); and 3) integrated approaches tailored to local contexts and local variations in disease transmission dynamics.

The work was coordinated through The Malaria Eradication Scientific Alliance (MESA), with headquarters at the Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal), a collaborative consortium of malaria research, policy, and implementation partners dedicated to advancing the science of malaria eradication. The first Malaria Eradication Research Agenda (malERA) initiative took place between 2008 and 2011. These papers provide an update to that one, and are named malERA Refresh.

“The value of malERA Refresh is that it focuses on problems that need to be solved, not only the technologies that could be developed,” says MESA chair Dr Regina Rabinovich (ISGlobal and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health). “Transforming the mindset from implementation to problem solving is an essential task for the next generation of scientists and program implementers,” she adds.

TDR has training programmes for scientists in low- and middle-income countries that are providing skills in implementation research, clinical trial management and how to disseminate research findings into policy and practice changes.

Each panel was guided by a chair and co-chair(s) who are renowned experts in their respective fields. The process was overseen by a Leadership Group composed of Drs. Regina Rabinovich (ISGlobal and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health), Pedro Alonso (WHO Global Malaria Programme), Marcel Tanner (Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute) and Dyann Wirth (Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and a former TDR Scientific and Technical Advisory Committee member).

For more information, contact:
WHO Global Malaria Programme
Saira Stewart