Malaria kills one child in Africa every forty seconds, accounting for more than 2,000 deaths every day. Caused by a mosquito-transmitted protozoan, malaria infects 300 to 500 million people worldwide and kills two to three million individuals annually.
Schistosomiasis, caused by infection with tissue-invasive parasitic flatworms, currently affects more than 200 million individuals and results in significant mortality and morbidity including anemia and severe liver disease. These deleterious consequences are disproportionately borne by children and pregnant women.
To address these urgent global health challenges, the Center for International Health Research (CIHR) at Rhode Island Hospital was founded. The center's mission is to understand the pathogenesis of tropical infectious diseases, specifically malaria and schistosomiasis, and to harness this knowledge to design improved treatments and vaccines.
To combat these infections, the center is engaged in studies integrating community-based epidemiologic studies in endemic countries with laboratory-based, basic science investigations. The center's research approach is rooted in the belief that the discoveries of tomorrow will come at the intersection of field and lab science.