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 SANBI enters fight against Ebola

SANBI enters fight against Ebola


Prof Alan Christoffels

The Global Emerging Pathogens Treatment Consortium (GET) was established in 2014 as a direct response to the 2014-16 Ebola virus disease outbreak in West Africa and on-going outbreaks of Lassa Fever, Meningitis, Multidrug resistance (MDR) enteric fevers and Yellow Fever across the sub region. GET represents an African-led multidisciplinary forum of experts capable of working together with international partners to strengthen Africa’s preparedness and resilience in tackling such infectious diseases outbreaks.

After three years of successfully drafting and vetting a national biobank governance framework, combined with cataloguing all Ebola samples, Sierra Leone embark on a data 

management and laboratory information management system (LIMS) strategy that will match their research vision for the national asset of Ebola biospecimens. Funding was secured to host a workshop on a data management design strategy and LIMS usage.

A team from South African National Bioinformatics Institute (SANBI) at UWC, led by SARChI Chair, Prof Alan Christoffels, was invited to run a workshop in Sierra Leone from 17-19th July 2017 on sample and data management best practices. The Ministry of Health and Sanitation (MOHS) and the Office of the National Security (ONS) in Sierra Leone hosted the SANBI team, while the coordinators were the GET Consortium, Sierra Leone country office senior staff.  The workshop provided information that will help enhance data acquisition and storage, as well as equipping local researchers with the necessary tools and training for big data analysis in Sierra Leone.

Bioinformatics workshop participants in Freetown, Sierra Leone​


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