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MiP Consortium awarded €11 million by EDCTP
Date:5/8/2009

The global Malaria in Pregnancy (MiP) Consortium, led by the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, has been awarded 11 million by the European and Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP) to undertake three new strands of research in Africa. The three grant recipients the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, the Barcelona Center for International Health Research in Spain and the Prince Leopold Institute of Tropical Medicine in Belgium will evaluate new and improved existing interventions for the prevention and treatment of malaria in pregnancy, which places up to 50 million women at risk every year.

Malaria in pregnancy is a major cause of severe maternal anaemia and preventable low birth weight in infants, which greatly increases the risk of infant death. In Africa, where malaria is endemic in most countries, its complications are responsible for as many as 100,000 infants dying needlessly every year. Malaria also accounts for approximately 10% of maternal deaths, suggesting that an estimated 25,000 maternal deaths could be prevented each year by improved control of malaria in pregnancy.

The Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM) has been awarded 3.6 million to undertake research to optimise the use of a particular antimalarial drug, sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine or SP, given to prevent malaria in pregnancy in Africa. Intermittent preventive treatment (IPTp) has proven highly effective in reducing the adverse effects of malaria infection in pregnant women and improving birth weight (and hence survival rates) in infants. The project is seeking to optimise the regimen of SP, which is used widely as IPTp whilst also looking at alternative approaches to IPTp. Consortium leader and project coordinator Professor Feiko ter Kuile explained the significance and future relevance of the activities led by LSTM: "SP is one of the main antimalarials used for the control of malaria in pregnancy, but despite ten years of wides
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Contact: Alan Hughes
a.p.hughes@liv.ac.uk
Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine
Source:Eurekalert  

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