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Home > Global Health Matters Jul/Aug 2018 > $17M is awarded to support HIV, disease ecology, mHealth projects Print

$17M is awarded to support HIV, disease ecology, mHealth projects

July / August 2018 | Volume 17, Number 4

Three male medical workers in white coats wearing gloves, one explains to the other two
Photo by Richard Lord for Fogarty

With support from Fogarty's HIV Research Training Program,
grantees will work in collaboration with academic institutions
in LMICs

Fogarty is awarding about $17.5 million in grants for HIV research training, virus transmission studies and the development of mobile health tools for research in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs).

HIV research training

The largest group of awards - expected to total about $13.5 million over five years - is to support HIV research training through grants being issued to nine U.S. universities. Working in collaboration with an academic institution in a LMIC, the grantees will train scientists in six African countries - Botswana, Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe - and in Indonesia, where the AIDS epidemic is accelerating. To reverse that trend, training for Indonesian scientists will develop advanced skills to effectively implement prevention and treatment measures. Several training programs for African scientists also focus on implementation science to manage HIV care and prevention efforts. Other training areas include HIV/TB epidemiology and application of geospatial tools to better understand and respond to the HIV epidemic.

In addition, two smaller grants were awarded that will help LMIC institutions improve their research infrastructure - one project will enhance an institutional review board, and the other will focus on research administration and management.

The NIH Office of the Director and National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) co-funded some of the awards.

Ecology and evolution of infectious diseases

Another program, focusing on disease ecology, will provide $2.5 million over five years to the University of Illinois for studies that will use new phylogenetic and bioinformatics approaches to better understand virus transmission routes in a biodiversity hotspot in western Uganda. The research grant is funded by Fogarty through the Ecology and Evolution of Infectious Diseases Initiative, a joint program of NIH and the National Science Foundation.

Mobile health technology and outcomes

To encourage exploration of mobile health (mHealth) solutions for low-resource settings, Fogarty is awarding about $1.5 million over two years to support four grants. A project in Costa Rica will develop mHealth tools enabling people in the community to identify and report insect breeding grounds to reduce vector-borne diseases. An effort in Thailand aims to lower HIV infection among young men who have sex with men by testing whether a social networking and game app can improve adherence to PrEP, the HIV medications that can diminish the risk of infection if taken daily. To help prevent cervical cancer, a project in Peru will study whether the colposcopy diagnostic procedure can be done remotely using mHealth technology. Telemedicine is also the focus of a program in Rwanda to see if it can be used to diagnose surgical site infections in women who have had cesarean deliveries.

2018 HIV Research Training Program awards

2018 Ecology and Evolution of Infectious Diseases award

2018 awards for Mobile Health: Technology and Outcomes in LMICs

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