February 24, 2024

Renewed partnership to boost skills needed to drive drug discovery and development in Africa

2 min read

The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA) and H3D Foundation have announced a new three-year phase of their partnership, aiming to boost the skills and capacity needed to drive increased research and development of new medicines in Africa.

Despite 20% of the global burden of disease impacting people living in Africa, just 2% of medical research focused on new infections originates in Africa. Since 2021, IFPMA and the H3D Foundation have collaborated to provide early and mid-career scientists in Africa with new opportunities to develop their skills to help address this challenge.

Richard Amewu, principal investigator for the Drug Innovation Group at the University of Ghana, said: “The IFPMA partnership with H3D Foundation has lent credibility to the continent, unlocking further international investment in drug discovery research and development. The continuation of the partnership between IFPMA and H3D Foundation is essential to allow us to continue to gain momentum with building the African drug discovery ecosystem, and to address critical gaps in research capacity, capabilities and infrastructure.”

Over the next three years, the partnership will tackle issues such as strengthening health systems, expanding the innovation ecosystem value chain, and addressing barriers for African scientists to break new ground within the drug discovery-related sciences.

Speaking from the International Conference on Public Health in Africa in Lusaka where the announcement was made, Professor Kelly Chibale, chairperson and CEO of H3D Foundation, said: “Our partnership with IFPMA has enabled us to scale up initiatives our H3D Centre has built and been a feeder for more programmes and an even bigger vision, including for the Grand Challenges Africa Drug Discovery Accelerator. This partnership has also catalysed interactions with representatives from the innovative pharmaceutical industry, at both local and international levels.”

Greg Perry, assistant director-general of IFPMA, commented: “Attracting, developing and nurturing scientific talent and innovation at local level will help ensure the African continent will be part of the innovation ecosystem value chain and healthy innovation. We are confident that our continued partnership with H3D Foundation is a sustainable investment in Africa’s health ecosystem, and we look forward to what we will achieve together in the next three years.”

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