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Burkina Faso



LMIC Affiliation

Institut de Recherche en Sciences de la Santé, Direction Régionale de l’Ouest (IRSS-DRO)

Site Description

Burkina Faso is one of the 20 poorest countries in the world and it has a very high morbidity rate from malaria. The collaboration between the Institut de Recherche en Sciences de la Santé, Direction Régionale de l’Ouest (IRSS-DRO) in Burkina Faso and Dr. Sunil Parikh started in 2004 through different projects on malaria conducted with the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). With this partnership, several young scientists have been trained in molecular biology and epidemiology.

In 2005, Dr. Parikh and Dr. Jean Bosco Ouedraogo began collaborating on a pharmacogenomic study in Burkina Faso. It was followed by pharmacokinetic and drug efficacy studies of antimalarials, the results of which influenced malaria treatment guidelines for the WHO in 2015. In 2012, Dr. Parikh moved to Yale, coincident with the receipt of a National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)-funded R21 proposal entitled “Innate immune responses in populations with differing susceptibility to malaria” conducted with Dr. Ouedraogo and IRSS-DRO in Burkina Faso. Through this new collaboration (IRSS-DRO-Yale University), investigators from IRSS-DRO spent several months at Yale for a laboratory training visit to learn techniques relating to immunologic assays relevant to the R21.

The IRSS-DRO-Yale University program has continued to grow. Drs. Parikh, Ouedrago,and Roch Dabire recently submitted an NIAID-R21 and NIAID-U01, which combines clinical studies with entomological experiments, as the IRSS has an internationally-renowned entomology research program and several insectaries. These new projects involve a growing collaboration with Dr. Brian Foy at Colorado State University, a vector biologist, who has been working with Dr. Dabire for years. Additionally, Dr. Parikh submitted an NIAID-R01 clinical trial with Dr. Ouedarogo, aimed at the rational use of antimalarials to reduce the risk of the emergence and spread of ACT resistance.

IRSS has a long history of training researchers from Europe and other African countries, and has also sent trainees to France, Germany, and the UK. This provides the unique opportunity to bilaterally train researchers in one of the highest malaria-endemic sites in the world.

Site Mentors

Sunil Parikh, MD, MPH, Associate Professor of Epidemiology (Microbial Diseases) and of Medicine (Infectious Diseases), Yale University

Jean Bosco Ouedraogo, MD, Professor of Parasitology, Universities of Ouagadougou and Bobo-Dioulasso; Head of Malaria & Neglected Tropical Diseases Unit, Institut de Recherche en Sciences de la Santé (IRSS); Adjunct Professor of Epidemiology (Microbial Disease), Yale School of Public Health

Point of Contact (if different from site mentors)

Sunil Parikh