Epicentre’s Scientific Day is a rare opportunity to immerse ourselves in the heart of epidemiology and research projects in humanitarian situations. Working side-by-side with MSF for over 30 years, Epicentre’s teams have evolved through a wide range of situations. Thus, they employ a variety of methods, with the constant aim of conducting studies whose results have an impact on medical practice.
Working within MSF’s programs, we aim to describe and analyse the difficulties encountered by healthcare teams. This will be seen in a presentation of a case series of edema in children. The first session of the day, which focuses on HIV, addresses the question of therapeutic efficacy, knowledge of HIV status and resistance to antiretroviral treatment. Continuing with the theme of widespread endemic diseases, one afternoon session is dedicated to tuberculosis, a disease that is still difficult to diagnose but for which there is some therapeutic progress.
Another main focus of MSF’s operational policy is caring for victims of violence. The second morning session will address this by analyzing projects in Amman and Gaza, as well as in Nairobi in the specific case of victims of sexual violence.
We also contribute to constructing response strategies, not only for MSF but also for national or international public health stakeholders. Two presentations show this: one on hepatitis in Cambodia with a healthcare model based on direct-acting antivirals, and one on the response to yellow fever epidemics with fractional dose vaccine. Epidemic response is also an opportunity to increase our understanding of the epidemiology of a disease. The analysis of the spread of a cholera strain from East Africa to Yemen is a good example.
Research in epidemic situations will be addressed more comprehensively in a series of presentations, including one on the ongoing Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Along with our Congolese colleagues from the Ministry of Health and Institut National de Recherche Biomédicale we present the trends and most recent analyses of the epidemiology of the epidemic, the medical care provided in treatment centers and the therapeutic trial comparing therapeutics under development.
Contributing to the development of new therapeutics is also part of our experience, as illustrated by the morning presentation on effectiveness of a new formulation of pediatric antiretrovirals developed by our friends at the DNDi. We have asked this team to talk about the difficulties of carrying out research and development activities in a humanitarian context, a presentation that will conclude our scientific day.
8.45 – Welcome and coffee
9.30 – Introductory remarks – Emmanuel Baron
9.45 – Session 1: HIV
Moderator: Anita Mesic, MSF - Operational Center Amsterdam
- Progress in viral suppression among HIV-infected people in two high HIV prevalence. Nolwenn Conan
- HIV status awareness among seropositive female sex workers in Nsanje, Malawi. Damian Mauambeta
- Acquired and transmitted drug resistance in Mozambique. Valentina Carnimeo
- Drug resistance among ART experienced hospitalized patients in Homa-Bay (Kenya) and Kinshasa (the Democratic Republic of Congo). Claire Bossard
10.45 – Session 2: Short presentations
Moderator: Olivier Bouchaud, Hôpital Avicenne, Bobigny
- Geographical dissemination of cholera from Kenya to Yemen. Francisco Luquero
- War wounded patients: one decade of treatment in Amman hospital. Rami Malaeb
- Antibiotic resistance among war-wounded patients in Amman hospital. Rasheed M. Fakhri
- April to September 2018, 2 000 wounded patients treated in hospitals by MSF in Gaza. Alessandro Pini
- Description of bilateral oedema cases among children hospitalised in Mali and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Jihane Ben-Farhat
- Effectiveness of a new ART formulation for children. Juvenal Nkeramahame
11.45 – Coffee Break
12.15 – Session 3: Hepatitis C
Moderator: Yap Boum II, Epicentre Cameroun
- Hepatitis C prevalence and risk factors survey in three rural districts, Cambodia. Chhorvy Sun
- MSF Hepatitis C Virus model of care - National perspectives: experiences from Epicentre/Médecins Sans Frontières, HCV project in Cambodia. Jean-Philippe Dousset
13.00 – Lunch on site
15.00 – Session 4: Tuberculosis
Moderator: Maryline Bonnet, Institut de Recherche pour le Développement, Mbarara
- Use of LAM test for tuberculosis diagnosis. Helena Huerga
- Safety of new multidrug-resistant TB drugs: results from the endTB observational study. Cathy Hewison
16.00 – Session 5: General session
Moderator: Thierry Allafort-Duverger, MSF - Operational Center Paris
- Fractional dose yellow fever vaccines for outbreak response. Aitana Juan
- Active screening for sexual and gender-based violence in Nairobi. Augusto Llosa
- Current Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Rebecca Coulborn and Luigino Minikulu
- Survival analysis of Ebola virus-infected patients admitted to treatment centres during the ongoing Ebola epidemic in the DRC. Francesco Grandesso
- A multicenter, multi-outbreak, randomized, controlled safety and efficacy study of investigational therapeutics for the treatment of patients with Ebola virus disease. Issaka Soumana
17.00 – Research and Development: not so easy...
Nathalie Strub-Wourgaft, Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative, Geneva
17.30 – Farewell drinks, 9th floor Terrace - Institut du Monde Arabe