Regional Genomics for malaria in Elimination 8 countries (RegGE8)
Request For Proposals: Country Projects
From:From: SADC Malaria Elimination Eight (E8) Secretariat and UCSF Malaria Elimination Initiative (MEI)
To: National Malaria Control Programs (NMCPs) and Public Health Research Institutions (PHRIs) in the following SADC E8 countries: Angola, Botswana, Eswatini, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe
Request for Proposals
The purpose of this Request for Proposals (RFP) is to enable National Malaria Control Programs (NMCPs) and Public Health Research Institutions (PHRI) within the Elimination 8 (E8) region (within Angola, Botswana, Eswatini, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe) to generate evidence and build capacity around the use of malaria molecular surveillance (MMS) to inform programmatic decision-making. Mozambique has separate MMS investments from the BMGF, so is not included in this specific funding opportunity.
Part 1: Submission of Letter of Intent
Recent advances in laboratory technologies and bioinformatics have made the rapid generation of genomic data to inform real-time decision-making a cost-effective option for many disease control programs. The current global SARS-Cov-2 pandemic has highlighted how genomic epidemiology can be integrated into routine surveillance to support effective decision making by filling critical gaps left by current case-based reporting while providing crucial new data on strain variation and transmission dynamics. Genomic epidemiology has been routinely used to understand transmission and drug resistance patterns of HIV and TB and presents valuable opportunities for disease surveillance within malaria control programs in southern Africa.
In line with new guidance from the World Health Organization (WHO), NMCPs are moving past the “one size fits all” approach and recognizing the need to better target and tailor interventions based on local epidemiology, to maximize impact and respond to changing transmission dynamics. Unfortunately, current surveillance data that inform decision-making are often incomplete, of low quality, and frequently unable to provide critical information that would be available through modern genotyping. Modern parasite and vector genomic data can “fill in the gaps” in routine surveillance data as well as generate a novel and rich data source that can provide NMCPs with a more comprehensive, accurate picture of what is happening at a very granular level. Examples of modern genotyping applications include:
- Early detection of drug or insecticide resistance
- Early detection of diagnostic resistance (pfhrp2/3 deletions)
- Understanding transmission patterns
- Who is transmitting malaria to whom