Renewal: The effects of helminths and of de-worming in pregnancy and early childhood on the incidence of allergic disease events and on atopic sensitisation in young children. (360G-Wellcome-074791_Z_04_A)
The impact of helminths on the response to immunisation and on susceptibility to infectious diseases in childhood in Uganda The programme comprises a cohort study, designed to examine effects of helminths and antihelminthic interventions in pregnancy and in early childhood on the immune response to childhood vaccines and on the incidence of infectious diseases in childhood. The intention is to establish a cohort in which the long term effect of these exposures can be clearly elucidated. Participants are drawn from Entebbe Municipality and the adjacent sub-county of Katabi. The population of this area is diverse, including fishing and farming, as well as urban and semi-urban communities, some very poor, some wealthy commuters with high-level office positions in the capital city, Kampala. Data from the programme will therefore be of interest in relation to several current hypotheses regarding lifestyle and risk factors for allergy but, by its design, provides a particular opportunity to examine the effects of helminths and their treatment on allergic conditions. The programme provides a lively, stimulating, multidisciplinary environment, ideal for training in epidemiological studies that involve socio-economic, clinical and immunological exposures and outcomes. Staff include four physicians employed full-time, with participation from hospital-based physicians, midwives and nurses. The research team participates in antenatal care, including a programme for prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmission, and the candidate has led an evaluation of this programme, and taken part in additional studies of factors affecting perinatal mortality. There is a large component of community work, with 80 village assistants who visit participating babies every two weeks and report at monthly meetings. There is a significant laboratory component, with three scientific officers and two technicians working on immunological assays to assess immune responses to helminths, vaccines and pathogens within the framework of the cohort study.
£103,847 19 Mar 2007