We are working with a number of institutes in Ghana to help them realise their dream of developing a drug discovery hub in their country. Over the next 10-15 years, they aim to establish a multi-centre programme which will be capable of undertaking hit discovery, hit to lead and lead optimisation across a range of diseases relevant to Ghana and the West African region.
Our role is to help them further develop their capabilities in screening, medicinal chemistry and drug metabolism and pharmacokinetics.
Our partners in Ghana include:
New Publication Highlights Challenges for Drug Discovery Research in Ghana
Our consortium have published a paper in PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases which highlights some of the challenges facing Ghanaian scientists while they carry out efforts to develop drug discovery research capacity in country.
This paper describes these challenges, and while not unique to Ghana, also discuss ways in which this consortia is overcoming some of these.
The full paper can be read in PLOS NTD.
Ghana Drug Discovery Hub Launch
NMIMR, University of Ghana and KNUST have been awarded US$1.8m by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to improve existing drug discovery capacity in the region and establish a drug discovery hub. Initially focusing on malaria, the hub will expand in due course to serve a variety of diseases.
Our recent visit in June launched this new initiative and was attended by all the partners.
This award allows the institutes in Ghana to move closer to their overall aim of establish drug discovery capability in Ghana in the next 10-15 years. The plan is that there will be facilities in country that are capable of undertaking hit discovery, hit to lead and lead optimisation across a range of diseases relevant to both Ghana and the wider West African region.
Academy of Medical Sciences
We were jointly awarded an Academy of Medical Sciences for networking with NMIMR. Back in early 2020, we had planned to host a meeting in Ghana bringing all researchers who worked in Drug Discovery together to talk about their strengths, areas of focus, and needs to develop their research.
The planned meeting for January 2021 had to be put on hold due to travel restrictions at the time, and an online meeting was held in it’s place in December 2020. From this online meeting, we developed a number of working groups with the researchers in Ghana – in chemistry, natural products and screening methods. These groups have given rise to training courses, further collaborations and short workshops.
In June 2022, we finally managed to get senior staff together again in Accra. This allowed us to catch up on research in drug discovery that has taken place and start planning our next round of activities.