Hopital St. Luc in Kinshasa (DRC)
A field site in Imerintsiatosika, Madagascar
A view from the University of Antananarivo, Madagascar
The Dougan Group works with a large network of collaborators to ensure that tools, technologies, and methodologies used in Cambridge are applied more broadly for global health impact.
Collaboration with International Vaccine Institute
There is a strong collaboration and a memorandum of understanding between the Dougan Group and the International Vaccine Institute (IVI) in Seoul, South Korea. IVI is the world’s only international organization devoted exclusively to developing and introducing new and improved vaccines to protect the world’s poorest people, especially children in developing countries. The Institute conducts research in more than 30 countries throughout Asia, Africa and Latin America on vaccines against enteric and diarrheal infections, Japanese encephalitis, MERS-CoV, Group A Strep, Schistosomiasis, and COVID-19, and develops new and improved vaccines.
Key joint global health programmes include:
Effect of a novel typhoid conjugate vaccine in Africa: a multicenter study in Ghana and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (THECA)
The THECA programme was developed to support typhoid conjugate vaccine introduction in African countries by generating vaccine performance data from West African countries using the recently licensed Typbar-TCVÒ (Bharat Biotech India Ltd). The consortium is planning two large-scale typhoid conjugate vaccine (TCV) studies – a cluster-randomised trial in Agogo, Ghana and a mass vaccination campaign in Kisantu, Democratic Republic of Congo. These studies leverage population-based, systematic blood culture surveillance established through IVI’s SETA (Severe Typhoid in Africa) surveillance network. In addition to measuring vaccine impact, these studies will generate important information about the feasibility and cost-effectiveness of different vaccine introduction approaches. Consortium members are working with potential early introducer countries in Africa to help them gather supportive evidence to apply for TCV introduction support from Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance.
The THECA consortium, which is coordinated by the University of Cambridge, brings together a diverse range of partners, including Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (Ghana), University of Antananarivo (Madagascar), University of Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso), Institut National de Recherche Biomédicale (Democratic Republic of the Congo), International Vaccine Institute (Republic of Korea), Foundation Mérieux (France), Institute of Tropical Medicine Antwerp (Belgium), International Centre for Diarrhoeal Research (Bangladesh), and University of Maryland (USA).These member organizations have a proven record of accomplishment in conducting surveillance and vaccine trials. Funding for THECA comes from the European and Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnerships (EDCTP) and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. For more information, please visit: https://www.thecaproject.net.
THECA partners are working closely with The Typhoid Vaccine Acceleration Consortium (TyVAC), a partnership between the Center for Vaccine Development at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, the Oxford Vaccine Group at the University of Oxford, and PATH, an international non-profit. TyVAC aims to accelerate the introduction of new typhoid conjugate vaccines (TCVs) as part of an integrated approach to reducing the burden of morbidity and mortality from typhoid in countries eligible for support from Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance (Gavi). The University of Cambridge is also a TyVAC Consortium member.
Vaccines Against Schistosomiasis for Africa (VASA)
The VASA project aims to address the gap between preclinical and early clinical development of SchistoShield® (Sm-p80 plus GLA-SE), a promising schistosomiasis vaccine candidate developed at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center.
The main objectives of this project are:
· Assess the safety/immunogenicity of SchistoShield® in a Phase I clinical study in healthy adults from Africa
· Refine and develop a female worm schistosome human challenge model
· Identify correlates of protection, innate and adaptive immune signatures, gene expression and the role of antibodies in the prevention/control of Schistosoma infections;
· Foster a global consortium to advance research on schistosomiasis disease burden, vaccines and address downstream access constraints in resource-poor settings
This consortium, which is coordinated by the University of Cambridge and funded by European Union Horizon 2020, also features partners from University of Gothenberg (Sweden), University of Antananarivo (Madagascar), University of Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso), Groupe de Recherche Action en Santé (Burkina Faso), PAI Life Sciences (USA), Leiden University Medical Center (Netherlands), and University of Tübingen (Germany). For more information, please visit: https://www.vasaproject.net.
The objective of the Vacc-iNTS project is to conduct a Phase I study to demonstrate the safety and immunogenicity of the iNTS-GMMA candidate vaccine in healthy European and African adults, and to strengthen a collaborative network of iNTS experts to raise awareness of disease burden and favour vaccine deployment in limited-resource settings. Vacc-iNTS is a consortium of 12 partners from 8 different countries, including iNTS-endemic countries, that involves experts from academic and research institutions
The Vacc-iNTS project is coordinated by the Sclavo Vaccines Association (www.sclavo.org), a non-profit organization devoted to support research and development of human vaccines. For more information, please visit: https://vacc-ints.eu.
With funding support from Cambridge-Africa ALBORADA Research Fund and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), IVI and the Dougan Group are working together to support expanded diagnostics and epidemiological research on COVID-19 with partners in Burkina Faso (University of Ouagadougou), Madagascar (University of Antananarivo), and the Democratic Republic of Congo (Institut National de Recherche Biomédicale). These efforts bring together the experience and expertise of partners in the field, IVI’s experience in coordination of epidemiological research studies, and University of Cambridge’s experience in conducting COVID-19 diagnostics.
For more information on the Cambridge-Africa awards, please visit: https://www.cambridge-africa.cam.ac.uk/cambridge-africa-updates/nuniversity-of-antananarivo-madagascarew-blog-post/and https://www.cambridge-africa.cam.ac.uk/cambridge-africa-updates/expansion-of-covid-19-diagnostic-capacity-in-the-democratic-republic-of-congo/
For more information on the Sida award, please visit: https://www.ivi.int/ivi-to-strengthen-covid-19-surveillance-in-sub-saharan-africa-with-support-from-sweden/
Additional Global Health Work
Strategic Typhoid Alliance across Africa and Asia (STRATAA)
The STRATAA consortium, which includes key partners from the University of Oxford’s Oxford Vaccine Group, the Malawi Liverpool Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Programme,the International Center for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (icddr,b), the Oxford University Clinical Research Unit (Vietnam and Nepal), and the University of Cambridge, has conducted a prospective multicomponent epidemiological study in three densely-populated urban sites in Bangladesh, Nepal, and Malawi. The study was designed with a comprehensive multicomponent epidemiological approach, nesting passive surveillance, serosurveillance and healthcare utilisation surveys within a demographic census population to accurately determine the age-stratified burden of enteric fever across a range of different epidemiological settings. The incorporation of novel laboratory methods for the diagnosis of febrile illness and investigation of the host and pathogen genetics and antimicrobial resistance determinants provides a unique platform to study this disease.