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AWARD: Two Ifakara scientists among 2022 R. Geigy award winners

Jan. 3, 2023
AWARD: Two Ifakara scientists among 2022 R. Geigy award winners
Ifakara Health Institute scientists Lorenz Hofer (right) and Mgeni Tambwe (center) hold their awards. Looking on is the Geigy Foundation President, Prof. Marcel Tanner. PHOTO | COURTESY/Prisca Kweyamba

Two Ifakara scientists have received the 2022 Rudolf Geigy Award. The scientists, Mgeni Tambwe and Lorenz Hofer, were awarded the prestigious award for their work to stop malaria transmission in Tanzania.

Together, they have worked in a mutual capacity exchange to develop a platform for malaria transmission studies at Ifakara Health Institute with further collaborations established with the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH).

Mgeni and Lorenz have worked tirelessly in the laboratory and the field and have managed to step up a research laboratory including a cell culture of malaria parasites which allows them to test the effect of new vaccines or drugs on malaria transmission in Tanzania.

Their work has paved the way for a greater understanding of parasite and mosquito interactions and has provided a platform available for existing and future collaborations to test interventions such as new vaccine candidates and transmission-blocking drugs.

For their work on malaria control, Mgeni and Lorenz were awarded the 12th R. Geigy Award 2022 and presented with CHF 20,000 by the R. Geigy Foundation during the award ceremony held on December 22, 2022.

During the ceremony, the Foundation President, Prof. Marcel Tanner recognized the award winners saying, "If we stick to the goal of eliminating malaria, we also need new interventions that prevent the parasite from being transmitted to the mosquito.”

"Lorenz Hofer and Mgeni Tambwe, in an exemplary collaboration, have created a sustainable infrastructure as well as innovations based on it that will allow us to tackle these burning global health challenges in the years to come,” said Prof. Tanner.

About the Rudolf Geigy Award
The Rudolf Geigy award is a prestigious award given by the Rudolf Geigy Foundation in memory of the biologist and founder of the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH), Rudolf Geigy.

The foundation awards this prize every two years to young researchers and public health specialists who distinguish themselves through outstanding achievements in the field of poverty-related and neglected tropical diseases.