ANDI Funded Projects

 

Evaluation of Medical Device Suite for Child Health – Malawi/ Rice University Project:

Newborn mortality contributes up to 40% of childhood deaths in many African countries and the number of newborn deaths in the continent is estimated at over 1 million per year, over 40% of the global burden[1]. As part of an effort to reduce newborn deaths in Africa, a locally derived bubble Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (bCPAP), referred to as Pumani, to support newborns with respiratory distress from diseases such as bronchiolitis, pneumonia and pneumocystis jeroveci pneumonia, has been developed and evaluated through a collaboration between the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, University of Malawi, Malawi Polytechnic University and Rice University in Texas, with funding from ANDI and others. Pumani is 10 times cheaper than bCPAP used in the West and the parts are largely made of locally available materials in Africa. Providing low cost bCPAP at district and central hospitals has a potential to prevent large number of neonatal deaths every year. A company has been identified to support the scale up and market distribution of the device in Africa.
 
 
Another exciting achievement from the same program is the development of a robust, effective and low cost phototherapy light referred to as Babylights, for the treatment of neonatal jaundice, a clinical condition predominantly affecting low birth weight neonates that can lead to death or permanent neurological sequelae. The new Babylight technology uses easily replaceable LED light bulbs instead of fluorescent bulbs - the traditional light sources that are difficult to source in Africa. Besides, the new technology is twenty times cheaper and most importantly provides UV light wavelength ideal to treat jaundice. So far twenty Babylights have been produced and distributed to district hospitals in Malawi and used in newborn wards with successful results. We are now seeking industrial partners to support the further development, testing and scale up of the Babylights in Africa. Through further testing and scale up and delivery of the devise, ANDI anticipates improving neonatal care services and prevent neonatal death through African led collaborations that innovate and deliver new technologies.
 
 

NIPRSAN Project:

Developing novel drugs from African traditional medicinal knowledge is a means to improve Public health and support development. Building on the knowledge of a traditional medicine practitioner, Nigeria’s National Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Development (NIPRD) developed the traditional herbal medicine Niprisan- a novel drug for the treatment of sickle cell anemia, a chronic blood disorder with few effective therapies. ANDI is now investing on that project by supporting the development of a novel and user friendly formulation of NIPRISAN with other drugs used for the management of sickle cell disease (SCD). The commercialization of Niprisan reached a number of commercial milestones, including regulatory approval in Nigeria; securing US-based commercial partner; demonstrating clinical efficacy and safety; awarded orphan drug status by the US Food and Drug Administration; and striking important relationships with domestic and international groups. Despite these successes, the development and commercialization of Niprisan has still not been concluded. A number of reasons, including inconsistent funding, manufacturing and management challenges, have cause developmental and commercialization challenges. NIPRD is considering options for another commercial partner to take the commercialization of the drug forward[2].

 

ANDI/WHO Demonstration Project:

ANDI is collaborating with African and Chinese institutions and companies to develop new diagnostic tools for neglected diseases including Schistosomiasis, Echinococcosis, African Sleeping Sickness, malaria (vivax and falciparum), and HIV. The new technology leverages the high throughput biomarker technology developed by China NDI research group. The technology proves to be innovative in addressing the major limitation of the current traditional diagnostic methods such as parasitological or clinical methods that are neither simple nor convenient for population based monitoring and surveillance and has low sensitivity and specificity. ANDI has secured some funding to support this project through a competitive World Health Organization’s, intergovernmental process to support few demonstration projects that has a potential for high impact. This effort has already resulted in two promising novel diagnostics for Schistosomiasis from China and Egypt, and we are now working to develop a technology transfer mechanism to support further evaluation, local production and distribution in Africa through a social venture mechanism. This project is also close to identifying a single diagnostics tool for malaria which will go far in supporting the control and elimination of malaria.

 

 


 [1] Levels & Trends in Child Mortality: Report 2015 Estimates Developed by the UN Inter-agency Group for Child Mortality Estimation. Accessed from: http://www.childmortality.org/files_v20/download/IGME%20report%202015%20child%20mortality%20final.pdf

 [2] The road to commercialization in Africa: lessons from developing the sickle-cell drug Niprisan: BMC Int Health Hum Rights. 2010; 10(Suppl 1): S11. Published online 2010 Dec 13. doi:  10.1186/1472-698X-10-S1-S11

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