P falciparum Genetic Diversity: Drug, Vaccine and Disease Severity Applications


Principal Investigator:
Dyann Wirth, Richard Pearson Strong Professor of Infectious Disease

Immunology+Infectious Diseases 050

Dates of Research:
July 1, 2009 — September 30, 2012


Our goals are to drive discovery of new targets for drug intervention and new vaccine candidate proteins, to develop improved clinical diagnostic tools, and to monitor the evolutionary consequences of large-scale interventions being implemented over the next several years using newly developed genomic tools for Plasmodium falciparum malaria. We propose to develop a high-density genetic diversity map of P. falciparum and the corresponding genotyping tools in order to identify genetic loci that are under natural selection and to associate those genotypes with specific parasite phenotypes such as drug resistance or disease states such as sever malaria. We will develop the tools and collaborations for worldwide surveillance programs to permit us to carry out this program. In parallel, we will use our knowledge of genetic diversity to develop specific diagnostic tools for us in surveillance for drug resistance and for monitoring of drug and vaccine trials