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Dr Mehul Dhorda

Dr Mehul Dhorda

Podcast interview

For malaria, parasite resistance and treatment efficacy is dynamic. Resistance to artemisinin, sometimes induced by poor quality medicines, causes artemisinin-based combination therapies (ACTs) to start failing. A robust system for surveillance of resistance can help ensure people get the right treatment at the right time.

Mehul Dhorda

DeTACT-Africa Coordinator / Head of Specimen Management Laboratory

Finding the best malaria treatments

Dr Mehul Dhorda is the Coordinator for clinical trials and related activities conducted in Africa as part of the UKAid-funded Developing Triple Antimalarial Combination Therapies or DeTACT Project led by Prof. Arjen Dondorp. These trials will compare the efficacy, safety and tolerability efficacy of two widely used antimalarial drug combinations against two Triple Antimalarial Combination Therapies or TACTs. In addition to the clinical trials, the DeTACT Project includes multi-faceted studies of the projected impact of TACTs on controlling the spread or emergence of multi-drug-resistant P. falciparum malaria, and of the ethical and commercial considerations related to their use across the malaria endemic world.

As the Head of the Specimen Management Laboratory at the Mahidol-Oxford Tropical Medicine Research Unit, he also works with his team to support DeTACT and other MORU-led projects by coordinating field laboratory activities and quality assurance. He has been involved as the Principal or Co-Principal Investigator in the conception, development and implementation of projects aimed at monitoring the spread or emergence of resistance to antimalarials through simple protocols which can be implemented even in the most resource-poor settings. These innovative projects aim to make the results of the surveillance freely available in near-real time through open access maps hosted by the WorldWide Antimalarial Resistance Network. He also leads multi-centric field studies to test a digital microscopy device for malaria parasite detection and quantification. He is the Head of Asia Regional Centre of the Infectious Diseases Data Observatory and of its EQA Programme, also based at MORU.

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