The vision of H3Africa is to create and support a pan-continental network of laboratories that will be equipped to apply leading-edge research to the study of the complex interplay between environmental and genetic factors which determines disease susceptibility and drug responses in African populations. Data generated from this effort will inform strategies to address health inequity and ultimately lead to health benefit in Africa.
To achieve this, the following issues must be addressed:
- Ensuring access to relevant genomic technologies for African scientists
- Facilitating integration between genomic and clinical studies
- Facilitating training at all levels, and particularly in training research leaders
- Establishing necessary research infrastructure
The first stage in the Initiative was the creation of two working groups, one focusing on communicable diseases and the other on non-communicable diseases. These groups were tasked with reviewing relevant current research activity in Africa, developing a scientific case for a pilot study of a specific disease(s) and producing some general principles/guidelines for collaboration, data sharing and addressing Ethical, Legal and Social Issues.