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London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine Malaria Centre

Ernest DiezBenavente at MIM 2018 | LLINs, MDA and zoonotic malaria

26 June 2018
MIM 2018 travel award winner


I was awarded a Travel Scholarship from the LSHTM Malaria Centre to attend the Multilateral Initiative for Malaria (MIM) conference in Dakar, Senegal which ran from the 14 until the 20 of April 2018.

It was the first time I attended a conference related to malaria of such dimensions and I learnt a great deal from it. It was particularly exciting to hear from the Key Note speakers leading the science all through the Plenary sessions with a special remark on Professor Sir Brian Greenwood historic review of chemo-prevention and its great contribution to reduce the burden of malaria all across the globe and specially in Sub-Saharian Africa.

Some of my personal highlights included the presentation of the positive results found on the studies conducted on the use of Long Lasting Insecticide-treated Nets (LLINs) treated with Piperonil Butoxide (PBO). As well as the exciting news involving the potential use of Ivermectin in Mass Drug Administration (MDA) settings to stop the transmission of malaria giving its strong mosquitocidal activity after being ingested by the mosquito with the blood meal.

On the 18 I presented a poster with my own research, titled ‘Analysis of nuclear and organellar genomes of Plasmodium knowlesi in humans reveals ancient population structure and recent recombination among host-specific subpopulations’. Here, we present work on the population structure found in Malaysian populations of the zoonotic malaria parasite Plasmodium knowlesi which is naturally transmitted in monkeys and has spilled recently into human populations.

I would like to thank the Malaria centre for their continued support and for giving me this opportunity.