Research and Innovation

Research and Development

USAID’s engagement and support for research and development on the prevention and treatment of malaria is longstanding and has yielded solid results. This includes providing support for the initial studies that demonstrated the effectiveness of insecticide-treated mosquito nets, which ultimately resulted in this tool becoming a core malaria control intervention. Drug efficacy monitoring conducted with USAID support provided key evidence documenting the emergence of artemisinin resistance on the Thai-Cambodia border in the late 2000s. Several new artemisinin-based combination therapies and treatments for severe malaria were developed with USAID’s support, and the Agency has worked to lift the regulatory hurdles to allow the introduction of these much-needed new treatments into countries. USAID’s current priorities for research and development are three-pronged and include the development of malaria vaccines, novel insecticide-based vector control tools, and new antimalarial drugs.

Key activities in these areas include:

Innovation

Innovations are critical to help the international development community achieve goals in the fight against malaria and other global health challenges. USAID streamlines processes, participates in market shaping initiatives, and works collaboratively with other partners.

As a leading procurer of malaria products, PMI actively engages with the global malaria marketplace to ensure access to quality malaria prevention, diagnosis, and treatment products at affordable prices. Through strategic sourcing and market analysis, PMI contributed to the reduction in the price of critical malaria products. The price of ITNs has declined more than 50 percent from $5.46 in 2007 to $2.10 in 2017. Similarly, the global price of the most commonly used malaria rapid diagnostic test has decreased 34 percent from 2013 to 2017.

PMI also identifies market-shaping opportunities to maximize market forces and accelerate access to lifesaving innovations. For example, PMI is engaged with UNITAID, IVCC and other partners to stimulate development of and facilitate access to new insecticides for malaria control. Through a co-payment program to lower the cost of novel, long-lasting residual insecticides and efforts to strengthen demand forecasting and fostering competition to keep prices for IRS sprays affordable over the long term. Furthermore, PMI collaborates with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) across a number of areas. For example, PMI and BMGF coordinate support in the Greater Mekong Subregion, where the emergence of ACT resistance threatens the region’s impressive progress in malaria control, and for operational research to drive down the burden of malaria across different levels of transmission.

Last updated: June 03, 2019

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