Principal Investigator: Fredros Okumu
Project leader/ Coordinator: Halfan Ngowo
Project Administrator: Rukia Mohamed
Funding Partner: Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Start date: Sept. 1, 2017
End date: Aug. 31, 2022
Eliminating dominant malaria vectors in rural Tanzanian villages
The project - whose complete title is: Howard Hughes Medical Institute-Gates International Scholar: Eliminating dominant malaria vectors in rural Tanzanian villages - investigates the key biological features, including genetic diversity, reproductive barriers and genetic flow patterns among members of the An. funestus group, focusing primarily on An. funestus s.s.
The research team also develop processes for successful colonization and mass-rearing of An funestus. In line with ongoing efforts to develop effective gene-drive strategies for malaria elimination, this project supports the development and potential deployment of future transgenes for An. funestus population suppression or modification. Working in a team of experts from different institutions, they consolidate the complementary expertise in ecology, molecular genetics, mathematical modelling and medical entomology to fill the current gaps, thereby dramatically improving our understanding of An Funestus.
The findings are primarily aimed at supporting high impact interventions, including future use of 'gene-drives' for suppression or modification of malaria vectors in Africa.#