March 07, 2020
Published in Malaria

OBITUARY Dr. Saadou Issifou

It is with heavy hearts that we inform you of the passing on Sunday 23 February 2020 of our dearest Dr. Saadou Issifou, MD PhD, former CERMEL Director from 2001 to 2013. He was most recently the President of the “Fondation pour la Recherche Scientifique” (FORS) in Cotonou, in his home country of Benin. He was also Research group leader at the Institute for Tropical Medicine at the University of Tübingen in Germany, as well as a lecturer at the University of Parakou, in Benin.

He was a member of several scientific committees and consortiums including, the Central African Network for TB, AIDS and Malaria (CANTAM), DCCC member at the EDCTP, CCG member at the CAMES, and was Principal Investigator of several international clinical trials performed in Lambaréné, Gabon and in Cotonou, Benin over many years.

His decades-long work as a clinician, researcher, and lecturer touched the lives of children and adults throughout Central and West Africa. Dr. Issifou dedicated his life to combating some of the greatest threats to human health and development, including anti-malarial drug development, and the successful search for a malaria vaccine. His many accomplishments in public health reflect both the grand legacy he leaves, and the great work we all must carry forward in his memory.

We share in the sorrow of his loving family and of our colleagues in all CANTAM countries at our loss. Dr. Issifou’s passing remains in our thoughts during this period of mourning and beyond.

Adieu Docteur Saadou and Rest In Peace

The Central Africa Clinical Research Network (CANTAM) works in synergy with the ministries of Health of Central African Regions via the department in charge of drugs and medications in order to develop pharmacovigilance capacity, which is not well developed in the sub-region. The Clinical Pharmacology unit and Pharmacovigilance (UPC-PV) of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) demonstrated their expertise within the CANTAM network countries starting with RoC. The training workshop was coordinated from January 14 to 18, 2020 in Brazzaville, organised by CANTAM in partnership with the ministry of Health and population, promotion of women and integration of women to development of the Republic of Congo. This workshop brought together the main stakeholders of Pharmacovigilance such as: pharmacists from the main hospitals of Brazzaville, members of all programmes working against diseases, pharmacists from the capital, and some traditional healers.

This training workshop also enabled the identification of focal points among the participants in charge of making the link between their hospitals, programmes and other institutions with the National Pharmacovigilance Center soon to be activated and functioning in RoC, and raising the awareness of the health personnel of two hospitals in Brazzaville on the importance and need of pharmacovigilance with the focus on the notification of drug-related adverse events.

Our sincere congratulations to both the CERMEL team and the ACCT organising committee for the success of the event. We all look forward and plan for the 3rd Edition next year.

We participated in the 2nd Edition of the African Congress for Clinical Trials (ACCT), Lambarene, 10-14 Nov 2019. The theme for the Congress was “Clinical trial in Sub-Saharan Africa; Challenge or Opportunity?”

This excellent Congress organised by our CANTAM colleagues of CERMEL brought together researchers from all over the world and was the opportunity to tackle the major challenges of today's research.

Our sincere congratulations to both the CERMEL team and the ACCT organising committee for the success of the event. We all look forward and plan for the 3rd Edition next year.

The University Cheikh Anta Diop (UCAD) had the pleasure to organize the 7th Pan African Multilateral Initiative on Malaria (MIM) in April 2018. Twenty years after the MIM Meeting, Dakar had the honour to host this prestigious malaria conference where they adopted the theme “Dakar II: two decades of progress, challenges and perspectives in ending Malaria”.

The 7th MIM conference served as an opportunity to review MIM’s 20 years of contribution to the global goal of ending malaria in Africa, to better address current malaria research and control priorities.

Leading and emerging malaria researchers were provided with a platform to show case their research findings, share experiences and novel ideas as well as establish new research collaborations. Young scientists were exposed to ask questions and interact with malaria experts.

CANATAM was in the same booth with the EDCTP where excited and curious researchers wanted to know exactly what CANTAM is doing and how they could be part. Léonard NUMFOR(Project Manager) Leonard provided some explanations, coupled with the flyers provided and shared which they could visit the sites.

CANTAM, a network of five established and two developing institutions in Central Africa in sub-Saharan Africa.

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