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Infrared Spectroscopy for Mosquito Characterization - "Deep Surveillance"

Principal Investigator: Dr. Fredros Okumu

Project leader/ Coordinator: Doreen Josen Siria & Halfan Said Ngowo

Project Administrator: Rukiyah Mohammad

Funding Partner: Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF)

Start date: Oct. 26, 2021

End date: Sept. 30, 2025

Infrared Spectroscopy for Mosquito Characterization - "Deep Surveillance"

Infrared Spectroscopy for Mosquito Characterization - "Deep Surveillance"

The Infrared Spectroscopy for Mosquito Characterisation project or simply "Deep Surveillance" aims in advancing and optimizing the Infrared (IR) and artificial intelligence (AI) techniques for rapid assessment of key entomological indicators such as age, sporozoites infections, and resistance status in wild-collected mosquitoes.

The project's objective is to develop and create a user-friendly system accessible for researchers and National Malaria Control Programs (NMCP). This innovative system allows users to easily collect and input IR-spectra data, enabling real-time and remote surveillance for mosquito age and species identification.

The incorporation of IR techniques not only promises rapid assessment but also presents a cost-effective alternative to current methods. In addition to these advancements, a cohort of technicians will undergo comprehensive training in Africa, ensuring the proficient utilization of the system in the field. Through this project, we aim to revolutionize mosquito surveillance, offering a valuable tool for malaria control efforts and contributing to the enhancement of entomological research methodologies.

Ifakara Health Insitute is implementing the project in collaboration with esteemed research groups experienced in infrared technology around the world. Partners include Dr. Maggy Sikulu-Lord from the NIRSID Consortium in Australia, Dr. Mercy Opiyo from the Manhiça Health Research Centre (CISM), Dr. Abdulaye Diabate from the Research Institute Science Health Regional Directorate L'ouest (IRSS), and Dr. Francesco Baldini along with Prof. Heather Ferguson from the University of Glasgow.

Additionally, the Project Lead is Dr. Fredros Okumu, and other colleagues from the Ifakara Health Institute including Halfan Ngowo, Doreen Siria, Rukiyah Mohammed, Issa Mshani, Naomi Urio, Jacqueline Mgaya, Emmanuel Mwanga, Sophia Mwinyi,  Neema Zephania and Mohammed Jumanne.