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Tech Update November 2020 10th November 2020

Download the Tech Updates highlighting vector biology and control news, publications and resources.

Given the breadth of vector control related literature, we are unable to include all relevant work. These updates are intended to focus primarily on Anopheles biology and a subset of control topics with global relevance.

 

Any views expressed in the updates do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of IVCC. In many cases, we directly quote sections of published work. Mention of trade names or commercial products is solely for the purpose of providing specific information and does not imply recommendation or endorsement by IVCC or its funders.

Effect of Malaria Control on Plasmodium Falciparum (Journal Article) 8th October 2015 IVCC in the Indo-Pacific: Delivering through Partnerships 17th August 2020

On Friday 21st August, APLMA will hold the second of its Malaria Gamechangers roundtable series. It focusses this time on vector control and is co-sponsored by IVCC and RBM Partnership to End Malaria. The roundtable aims to engage senior policy-makers across the Indo-Pacific in exploring some of the new and existing vector control products that will be vital to achieving malaria elimination in the region by 2030.

The panel will also focus on the regulatory hurdles, as outlined in IVCC’s Regulatory Landscape Report, that must be negotiated swiftly if these products are to have the desired impact. Vasanthan John Paul, the author of the report and IVCC’s regulatory consultant, will join the panel to speak on regulatory issues and opportunities for improved access to vector control solutions.

On the panel, there will also be a number of representatives from companies that IVCC has enjoyed successful partnerships with for many years, such as Bayer Cropscience and Sumitomo Chemical Company. There will also be speakers from organisations and countries with whom it is important we strengthen our relationships in order to maximise the impact of our work in the region. Our co-sponsoring of the roundtable is itself also a small example of where we have been forging new relationships and collaborations, as we seek to strengthen our network in support of the Indo-Pacific Initiative (IPI), funded by the Australian Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

IPI’s overall aim is to develop a vector control toolbox for the Indo-Pacific region. We are approaching this by focussing primarily on tools for malaria control in Papua New Guinea and Cambodia. In PNG, we are working with the PNG Institute of Medical Research, Burnet Institute and James Cook University, to develop the capacity in PNG for testing new tools, build a national vector control stakeholder network and test products in the community. The priority product categories for testing in PNG are Indoor Residual Spraying (including eaves and verandas), Spatial Repellents and Larvicides. In Cambodia and Thailand, we are working with a partnership led by University of California, San Francisco-Malaria Elimination Initiative, involving CNM, AFRIMS and Kasetsart University amongst others, to evaluate Forest Packs as a means of delivering effective bite prevention tools (Insecticide Treated Clothing, Spatial Repellent and Topical Repellent) to forest-going populations. To support these two main areas of work, we are also partnering with Imperial College London to model the potential impact of new new tools on malaria in the region.

IPI is guided by an Advisory Group of experts based in the region or with significant experience therein. The Advisory Group is based on the principle of delivering through robust partnerships, and draws from IVCC’s trademark model for external expert engagement and scrutiny: the External Scientific Advisory Committee (ESAC). IPI sits under Objective 7 of the IVCC strategy, which aims ‘to capitalise on knowledge and innovation to address malaria and other vector borne diseases outside sub-Saharan Africa in order to maximise the impact of our work and the products being developed’. Now more than ever, if we are to expand our activity into new geographies with little ‘on the ground’ presence, we are reliant on networking and forging strong partnerships. Add the myriad ramifications of Covid-19 into the mix- not least restricted travel- and it becomes even more important to have trusted collaborations through which to deliver.

As IPI ramps up, IVCC further explicates its strategic approach to the Indo-Pacific region and new opportunities arise elsewhere, we will need to continue to think realistically about what IVCC can deliver and what is best done by partners. We are fortunate in these considerations that IVCC has always recognised the importance of delivering through strong partnerships and that this is built into the way that we operate.

If IVCC is to achieve its vision of ‘saving lives, protecting health and increasing prosperity by preventing insect-borne disease’, and if success is to be seen more widely across the vector control community in the fight against insect-borne disease, it is clear that success will depend on the strength of working with the right people, at the right time and via the right kind of collaborations.

 

 

 

IVCC’s Ambassador Pack 12th August 2020

IVCC has developed its new ‘Ambassador Pack’ which is now available digitally or in hard copy version.  The Pack contains 14 loose leaf pages which cover the broad spectrum of IVCC’s work, including Product Development, Key Highlights and Market Access workstreams.  The pack also contains an updated version of the IVCC strategy which was completed earlier this year.

View the online version of the Ambassador Pack here.

Ensuring Mosquito Net Distribution Could Halve Malaria 7th August 2020

Mosquito net distribution could help halve the number of deaths from Malaria during the coronavirus outbreak in Africa, researchers say.

There are concerns that malaria control activities – such as distributing insecticidal nets – could be severely disrupted as a result of the pandemic. Writing in Nature Medicine, Imperial’s COVID-19 Response Team estimate that malaria deaths could more than double in 2020 compared to 2019. But swift action could substantially reduce the burden of malaria and prevent joint malaria and COVID-19 epidemics simultaneously overwhelming vulnerable health systems. In the article the researchers estimate the impact of disruption of malaria prevention activities and other core health services under four different COVID-19 epidemic scenarios.

An estimated 228 million long-lasting insecticidal nets (LLINs) were due to be delivered across Sub-Saharan Africa this year, more than ever before. They estimate that if these mosquito nets are not deployed and preventative chemotherapy and case management is reduced by half for six months, there could be 779,000 malaria deaths in sub-Saharan Africa over 12 months.

If prevention activities were to stop during the outbreak, the team estimates that 200,000 deaths could still be prevented over six months if treatment of malaria is maintained. The researchers recommend that routine distributions of LLINs should be prioritised alongside maintaining access to antimalarial treatment and the use of chemoprevention to prevent substantial malaria epidemics.

 

 “It is vitally important to get malaria prevention measures out now to reduce the pressure on health systems as COVID-19 cases increase.”

Dr Thomas Churcher, Imperial’s School of Public Health

 

“In the face of COVID-19 it will still be important to ensure vector control interventions continue to be deployed as much as possible in order to not only sustain the gains already made in malaria elimination but ensure we do not have a resurgence in malaria.”

Okefu Oyale Okoko, Deputy Director/Head Integrated Vector Management Branch National Malaria Elimination Programme (NMEP) Public Health Department Federal Ministry of Health Abuja

 

“The efforts to maintain net campaigns across Sub-Saharan Africa are absolutely vital. We know how to prevent, track and treat malaria, but the strain Covid-19 puts on health systems risks hard fought for progress. This important modelling is a reminder that efforts to end malaria sit on a knife edge. Protecting people against Covid-19 cannot be pursued in isolation. Governments must see maintaining efforts against malaria as a core part of pandemic preparedness or risk a catastrophic domino effect.”

James Whiting, Executive Director, Malaria No More UK

 

Read the full article > 

 

 

For more information contact:

Stephen Johns
Imperial College London
s.johns@imperial.ac.uk

+44 (0) 20 7594 9531
+44 (0) 7792 657226

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