Three Hopkins faculty members receive Grand Challenges grants from Gates Foundation
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation today announced 81 grants of US$100,000 each to explore bold and largely unproven ways to improve health in developing countries. The grants were awarded to researchers in 17 countries through the foundation’s Grand Challenges Explorations initiative, which aims to develop a pipeline of creative ideas that could change the face of global heath.
The projects focus on novel approaches to prevent and treat infectious diseases, such as HIV, malaria, tuberculosis, pneumonia, and diarrheal diseases. The first round of 104 Grand Challenges Explorations grants was announced in October 2008.
“Investments in global health research are already paying big dividends. An incredible number of new vaccines, drugs, and other tools are becoming available to improve health in developing countries,” said Dr. Tachi Yamada, president of the Gates Foundation’s Global Health Program. “Grand Challenges Explorations is our way to help inspire the bold ideas that could one day help transform global health.”
The 81 funded researchers will explore a wide range of new ideas, including giving mosquitoes a “head cold” to prevent them from detecting and biting humans; developing a tomato to deliver antiviral drugs; and using a laser to enhance the effect of vaccines.
The winners from Hopkins:
Marcelo Jacobs-Lorena, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
Using Bacteria to Contain the Spread of Malaria
Gyanu Lamichhanne, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
Vaccine to Prevent Latent TB Infection
Craig Montell, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
New Highly Potent Insect Repellents to Control Insect-Borne Disease
The Johns Hopkins Center for Global Health was launched in May 2006 to facilitate and focus the extensive expertise and resources of the Johns Hopkins Institutions, together with global collaborators, to effectively address and ameliorate the world's most pressing health issues.
The Center for Global Health helps to broker collaboration among nearly two dozen existing programs in the Schools of Public Health, Medicine, and Nursing; together, those programs already operate more than 400 projects around the world. The Center also seeks out and secures funding for new initiatives, recruits faculty to address emerging global health issues, and trains students to be the global health leaders of tomorrow.