NEW: Over 100 African researchers begin training... more
Over 100 African researchers begin MalariaGEN-PAMCA training course

For 11 weeks, participants from across Africa will join virtual workshops to learn how to analyse genomic surveillance data of malaria mosquitoes.

News 13 Mar 2024 by Amy Tallentire
Mosquito
Map of the African continent with countries of participants in the MalariaGEN-PAMCA training course highlighted: Gambia, Senegal, Mali, Burkina Faso, Cote d'Ivoire, Ghana, Togo, Benin, Nigeria, Cameroon, Gabon, Republic of Congo, Chad, Sudan, Egypt, Tunisia, Ethiopia, Djibouti, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Burundi, Zambia, Malawi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Madagascar, Namibia
Countries of participants on the third MalariaGEN-PAMCA training course (made with mapchart.net)

The first workshop of the 2024 MalariaGEN-PAMCA training course in data analysis for genomic surveillance of African malaria vectors kicked off today.

For the third iteration of the online training course, we are delighted to welcome 106 participants from 30 African countries into the MalariaGEN community.

The course will run from today until the 29th of May 2024. Trainees will be taking part in eight workshops over the next 11 weeks, where they will be introduced to essential practical techniques for the analysis of genomic data for the surveillance of Anopheles mosquitoes.

Malaria vector control methods are evolving, but so are mosquitoes. Information about how and when mosquitoes become resistant to insecticides is needed so that malaria control programmes can adjust their strategies accordingly. That is why genomic surveillance is crucial, and this training aims to strengthen bioinformatics capabilities within endemic countries to use genetics to monitor malaria vectors.

The success of the earlier iterations of this course has meant that previous trainees are returning to help as teaching assistants by providing support and answering questions. This will allow for the continued development of capacity for Anopheles genomics in malaria-endemic countries.

 

Paballo Chauke, MalariaGEN Training Coordinator, says:

“As we embark on the third iteration of our genomic data analysis training course for African malaria vectors, I’m reminded of the immense inquisitiveness, knowledge(s) and diverse experiences each participant brings to the table. With each new cohort, we’re building a community of changemakers committed to tackling malaria head-on.”

 

Elijah Juma, Program Manager, PAMCA, says:

“PAMCA, its MalariaGEN partners at the Wellcome Sanger Institute’s Genomic Surveillance Unit, and the G-AVENIR team have made tremendous efforts to create a platform for training, nurturing, and sharpening skills for the analysis of vector genomics data. The third iteration of this course reflects a joint commitment to develop and strengthen institutional capacity to generate, process, and utilise genomics data to inform key decisions on vector control programmes in Africa. We are very grateful to our funding partners who continue to make this possible through their generous support.”

 

Alistair Miles, Malaria Vector Surveillance Lead, Genomic Surveillance Unit, says:

“The success of this training course is a testament to our shared dedication to eliminating malaria by growing the expertise required to generate, analyse and use high-quality surveillance data. This would not be possible without our continuing collaboration with PAMCA and the support of all our partners who came together to develop and deliver this course.”

 

Ibra Lujumba, Teaching Assistant & PAMCA Fellow, says:

“Having completed this course myself in its first year, I am excited to contribute to training a new cohort of African students where they will gain invaluable and practical skills in genomics data analysis. The training course is cultivating a community of learners that are dedicated to driving positive change across Africa. I am very proud to be a part of this community.”


Find out more about the training course.

View training material for the course, including the workshop modules and data resources. They are openly available for those interested in self-guided learning.

Read about the previous cohorts who met up for a hackathon ahead of the 2023 PAMCA Conference in Addis Ababa.