Malaria Prevention

Insecticide-treated bednet efficacy and vector behavior

Vector control measures are the cornerstone of malaria prevention. The global health community has emphasized high coverage with effective, long-lasting insecticide treated nets (ITNs or LLINs) over the last ten years. As a result, coverage has increased and malaria morbidity and mortality have declined. However, in some areas, high coverage with ITNs has not produced the expected results. Our team works on understanding why malaria has persisted in our study area despite high coverage with ITNs. We are especially interested in vector behavior, resistance to insecticides, and human behavior that may reduce the effectiveness of ITNs.

Collaborators: Andrew Obala (Moi University), Judith Mangeni (Moi University)


  • A. A. Obala, J. Mangeni, A. Platt, D. Aswa, L. Abel, J. Namae, W. Prudhomme O’Meara “What Is Threatening the Effectiveness of Insecticide-Treated Bednets? A Case-Control Study of Environmental, Behavioral, and Physical Factors Associated with Prevention Failure”, PLoS One 2015 10(7):e0132778
  • J. N. Mangeni, D. Menya, A.A. Obala, A. Platt, W. P. O’Meara, “Development and piloting of an evidence-based rapid assessment tool for malaria prevention”, Malaria Journal 15:544 (2016)

EPiTOMISE – Enhancing Preventive Therapy Of Malaria in children with Sickle cell anemia in East Africa

Certain demographic groups are at increased risk of severe outcomes when infected with malaria, including very small children, pregnant women, and children with sickle cell anemia. Over 240,000 children with sickle cell anemia (SCA) are born each year in Africa. Without sophisticated medical care, SCA patients in African settings die at young ages: in a Western Kenya cohort of newborns, 25% of SCA children died before their 3rd birthday. One of the major causes of mortality in SCA children is malaria, however regimens for malaria prevention in these children are suboptimal and adherence is poor. We are working with Steve Taylor and Festus Njuguna to test alternative and hopefully more effective chemoprohylaxis regimens to protect these children from hospitalization, painful crises, and death due to malaria.

Collaborators:  Steve Taylor, Festus Njuguna (Moi University)