Deep Dives

The Deep Dives show -as far as possible- the state of the art of main malaria research topics. Taking MESA Track as the information source, the Deep Dives gather all the projects around a specific research question and classify them according to research areas, timelines and geographic locations. They also include information on funding sources, principal institutions and principal investigators. The aim of the Deep Dives is to be a “one-stop-shop” where the malaria community can glance at the research being done in a specific area, with details of the questions that are being addressed, the methods used, and the results obtained. They are similar to systematic reviews of published evidence, but differ in that the Deep Dives collect a broader scope of methodologies, and focus not only on the published results but also on the ongoing research and the characteristics of the projects themselves. Choose a topic to view the details.
An. stephensi
Anopheles stephensi, an invasive and efficient urban vector, was historically considered an Asian malaria vector. However in 2012, it was detected for the first time in the city of Djibouti in the Horn of Africa. In 2019, WHO released a vector report warning of the invasion and spread of Anopheles stephensi mosquitoes to parts of Eastern Africa and Sri Lanka, and outlined steps to take in-country to combat this. This urban vector has now been detected in West Africa and Yemen. In September, 2022, a new WHO Initiative to stop the spread of An. stephensi in Africa was published. There is still much to be understood about the factors propagating its expansion, composition, dynamics, distribution and behaviour in its new environments. A clear understanding of these factors is vital to elucidating which type of interventions to develop and where such interventions should be targeted.

25 Nov 2022

There are myriad of socioeconomic, ecological and environmental factors that contribute to malaria transmission in urban and semi-urban areas. Clear understanding of these factors is crucial for the development of future urban malaria programs.

08 Aug 2022

In 2013, the Malaria Vaccine Technology Roadmap (MVTR) was updated in response to marked changes in epidemiology and control status of malaria. The need to address Plasmodium vivax malaria infections were therefore considered and vaccine for P. vivax was made part of the vision leading to progressive malaria elimination and-ultimately-global eradication.  This deep dive aims to describe the landscape of current research projects relevant to P. vivax vaccine research including discovery, pre-clinical and clinical phase.

04 Aug 2022

A WHO Technical Consultation to Review the Role of Drugs in Malaria Prevention for People Living in Endemic Settings took place on October 16 - 17, 2019 [ref]. The meeting discussed malaria chemoprevention including SMC, IPTi and IPTp strategies, with the aim to review the state-of-the-art in the use of chemoprevention to reduce deaths, morbidity and anaemia from malaria, and to reduce malaria transmission, and provide guidance to WHO on priority investments in malaria chemoprevention for people living in endemic settings.

28 Jul 2022

COVID-19
As the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continues to evolve it is essential to mitigate risk of increased incidence of other infectious diseases. In regions with malaria transmission, it will be important to understand the potential impact to epidemiological changes, trends in transmission, and clinical presentation of COVID-19 and malaria individually, and as co-infections.

22 Jul 2022

Targeted Test and Treat (TTaT) strategies for malaria are defined by WHO as testing a sub-population at high risk of infection with a parasitologic test, and treating confirmed malaria cases to reduce transmission (risk factors include demographic, occupational and exposure characteristics). The WHO Global Malaria Programme is currently developing new Guidelines for Malaria Elimination to provide policy advice to countries, including recommendations on the implementation of TTaT interventions. With the aim of facilitating the work of the Malaria Elimination Guidelines Development Group, this deep dive compiles the landscape of recent and ongoing research in malaria TTaT strategies and provides an overview of the projects’ main characteristics.

22 Jul 2022

A WHO consultation to discuss malaria vaccines and biologicals research and development, with the aim to review the state-of-the-art in malaria vaccine development including new developments in the field, key challenges and opportunities, was convened by WHO in July 2019 [ref].

22 Jul 2022

While long-lasting insecticide-treated nets and indoor residual spraying remain the backbone of malaria vector control, larval source management (LSM), which includes larviciding, has gained renewed interest as an additional intervention for the malaria toolbox. This deep dive compiles the landscape of recent and ongoing research in larviciding and provides an overview of the projects' characteristics.

22 Jul 2022

Mass Drug Administration (MDA), defined by WHO as the administration of antimalarial treatment to all age groups of a defined population or every person living in a defined geographical area (except those for whom the medicine is contraindicated) at approximately the same time and often at repeated intervals, has been historically a key component of malaria control and elimination strategies. With the aim of facilitating the discussions at the Evidence Review Group (ERG) on MDA for malaria held in September 2018, this deep dive compiles the landscape of recent and ongoing research in antimalarial MDA and provides an overview of the projects’ main characteristics. 

22 Jul 2022

Mass Test and Treat (MTaT) strategies are defined by WHO as testing the entire population in a defined geographic area at approximately the same time with a parasitologic test, and treating confirmed malaria cases to reduce transmission. The WHO Global Malaria Programme is currently developing new Guidelines for Malaria Elimination to provide policy advice to countries, including recommendations on the implementation of MTaT interventions. With the aim of facilitating the work of the Malaria Elimination Guidelines Development Group, this deep dive compiles the landscape of recent and ongoing research in malaria MTaT strategies and provides an overview of the projects’ main characteristics.

22 Jul 2022

A WHO technical consultation to discuss what genetic epidemiology of malaria parasite and Anopheline mosquitoes can tell us about malaria transmission, antimalarial drug resistance, and a possible role as a surveillance tool was convened by WHO in June 2019 [ref]. Outcomes of this meeting were reported at the October 2019 Malaria Policy Advisory Committee (MPAC) meeting where the committee recognized both the potential genomic surveillance of malaria, and the need for further research [ref].

22 Jul 2022

A WHO Technical Consultation to Review the Role of Drugs in Malaria Prevention for People Living in Endemic Settings took place on October 16 - 17, 2019 [ref]. The meeting discussed malaria chemoprevention including SMC, IPTi and IPTp strategies, with the aim to review the state-of-the-art in the use of chemoprevention to reduce deaths, morbidity and anaemia from malaria, and to reduce malaria transmission, and provide guidance to WHO on priority investments in malaria chemoprevention for people living in endemic settings.

22 Jul 2022

A WHO Technical Consultation to Review the Role of Drugs in Malaria Prevention for People Living in Endemic Settings took place on October 16 - 17, 2019 [ref]. The meeting reviewed how to best enable the implementation of chemoprevention strategies such as SMC, IPTi and IPTp, and the existing guidance and constraints of the use of chemoprevention.

22 Jul 2022

In order to eliminate malaria from endemic settings an integrated vector management (IVM) approach is needed and to tackle residual transmission, there is a need to develop additional vector control strategies that complement Long Lasting Insecticide Nets (LLINs) and Indoor Residual Spraying (IRS) by targeting mosquitoes that feed or rest outdoors. This deep dive aims to describe the landscape of current research projects relevant to ATSB and other innovative traps and baits for mosquito control, with a focus on malaria vectors.

22 Jul 2022

Border malaria is defined as the malaria transmission or potential for transmission that takes place across or along borders between countries sharing a land border and is frequently cited as a challenge to malaria elimination. This deep dive aims to review ongoing and closed projects that identify work on some aspect of border malaria. 

22 Jul 2022

Recently, next-generation ultrasensitive rapid diagnostic tests (uRDTs) for Plasmodium falciparum have become commercially available. This deep dive aims to review the current landscape of research in highly-sensitive point of care tests by systematically collecting data of funded and current research projects.

22 Jul 2022

Malaria ‘reactive strategies’ are those implemented in response to a recently confirmed infection (index case) among a subset of population, i.e. household members, neighbours, or co-travellers/co-workers who may have experienced the same exposure as the index case. The WHO Global Malaria Programme is currently developing new Guidelines for Malaria Elimination to provide policy advice to countries, including recommendations on the implementation of reactive interventions. With the aim of facilitating the work of the Malaria Elimination Guidelines Development Group, this deep dive compiles the landscape of recent and ongoing research in malaria reactive strategies and provides an overview of the projects’ main characteristics.

22 Jul 2022

A WHO Technical Consultation on Seasonal Malaria Prevention: Evidence for policy review took place on October 14 - 15, 2019 [ref] with the aim of reviewing ways of optimising the implementation of the strategy and reviewing the existing guidance and constraints on its use. 

22 Jul 2022

In order to eliminate malaria from endemic areas new strategies, such as nanotechnology, are starting to be part of the therapeutic arsenal to fight malaria. Applied nanotechnology can contribute to discover new vaccine formulations or diagnostic test, more targeted treatments, more efficient vector control strategies or to block specifically transmission stages.  

22 Jul 2022

Targeted Drug Administration (TDA) strategies for malaria are defined by WHO as the administration of a full therapeutic course of an antimalarial medicine to a sub-population at increased risk of infection and irrespective of infectious status (risk factors include demographic, occupational and exposure characteristics). The WHO Global Malaria Programme is currently developing new Guidelines for Malaria Elimination to provide policy advice to countries, including recommendations on the implementation of TDA interventions. With the aim of facilitating the work of the Malaria Elimination Guidelines Development Group, this deep dive compiles the landscape of recent and ongoing research in malaria TDA strategies and provides an overview of the projects’ main characteristics.

22 Jul 2022

Plasmodium knowlesi is the fifth species that can cause malaria in humans and was declared an emerging public health threat in 2004. Currently, this species still holds many unanswered questions, such as its transmission mechanism or its complete geographic distribution; threatening the effectiveness of malaria control and elimination strategies. This deep dive aims to describe the landscape of current research in P. knowlesi.

22 Jul 2022

The potential administration of the endectocide drug ivermectin to control malaria transmission is gaining increased attention from the scientific community. This deep dive aims to describe the landscape of current research projects tackling ivermectin for vector control, with a focus on malaria vectors, through the creation of a comprehensive database of the current research activities.

22 Jul 2022