Welcome

TO THE CENTRE OF EXCELLENCE FOR HEALTH-RELATED RESEARCH AND TRAINING IN AFRICA.

ABOUT US

The mission of the BRTI is to promote the health and quality of life of the peoples of Africa through research and training in the field of biomedicine. The institute emphasises the need to establish and maintain the highest levels of quality, professionalism, ethical standards and efficiency in its activities, and publishes these webpages in a spirit of openness and transparency.

 

Our Current Projects

MANICALAND HIV PROJECT

The Manicaland centre is commited to multidisciplinary research that help us understand and respond to trends in the spread, impact and control of the HIV epidemic in Zimbabwe.

CHIEDZA

A cluster-randomised trial that aims to determine the impact of community-based integrated HIV and sexual and reproductive health services for youth on HIV and other health outcomes. The trial is being conducted in 3 provinces in Zimbabwe, a country with a high HIV prevalence.

TESA II

Trials of Excellence in Southern Africa (TESA) consortium which is a continuation of the TESA I. TESA I was founded by a group on 9 institutions from 6 different under the phase 1 EDCTP framework. This TESA I consortium aimed to build capacity and strengthen less established institutions, including infrastructure for conducting clinical trials in the fields of HIV/AIDS, TB and Malaria, training and mentorship programs which ultimately would improve the capacity of clinical research among participant institutions.

COP-19

Health system strengthening is a key thematic research area at the Biomedical Research and Training Institute (BRTI) and is led by the Centre for International Health and Policy (CIHP). Such research evolves around health systems to generate evidence that contributes to policies and initiatives for strengthening and improving health system performance for low and middle income countries (LMIC). In the past 8 years research on health financing, human resources and gender responsive health systems has been conducted and proposals for follow up research are being developed. Research conducted which contributes to health system strengthening so far include;

ICEMR

Despite the intensified use of Insecticide Residual Spraying (IRS) and Insecticide Treated Nets, parts of Zimbabwe have been experiencing a dramatic rise in numbers of malaria cases, with Manicaland experiencing one of the worst outbreaks. The BRTI, in collaboration with Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, the National Institute for Health Research and the University of the Witwatersrand have established a field site in Mutasa to study different aspects of malaria and the mosquitoes responsible for its transmission.

IMVASK

Impaired linear growth (stunting), is one of the most common manifestations of vertically-acquired HIV which can adversely impact bone and muscle development and function, particularly during adolescence – a critical period of somatic growth. We hypothesize that the accrual of bone mass in children with HIV during growth may be reduced, which will put them at increased risk of adverse musculoskeletal outcomes.

FAST

Youth have the highest incidence of HIV in sub-Saharan Africa but the lowest rates of testing. The feasibility and acceptability of HIV self-testing in adolescents and young people (FAST) study will investigate whether self-testing using oral mucosal transudate tests could be a solution. 

BREATHE

A multi-site, individually randomised, double-blinded, placebo-controlled clinical trial. The trial aims to assess whether adjuvant treatment with azithromycin results in improvement in lung function in HIV-positive children with chronic lung disease. The main study outcome is Forced Expiratory Volume in one second z- score (FEV1z) after 12 months of initiation of the trial drug. 

B-GAP

Investigate two interventions aimed at improving uptake of HIV testing and engagement with HIV care for children aged 2 – 18 years.  

ARGUS

The aims of this study are to determine prevalence of and underlying molecular mechanisms for antimicrobial resistance in gram negative bacteria causing urinary tract infections in Zimbabwe, to investigate risk factors for antimicrobial resistance and to examine how antimicrobial resistance impacts on clinical outcome. A further aim is to evaluate antibiotic consumption and prescribing practices at the primary clinic level.

FIEBRE

A multi-disciplinary project, led by the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, that is investigating the leading causes of fever in children and adults attending primary care health services and those admitted to district hospitals in Laos, Malawi, Mozambique, Myanmar and Zimbabwe. This is the largest study of its kind, aiming to tackle antimicrobial resistance and develop a ‘blueprint’ for treatment.

OUR LABORATORY

The BRTI laboratory is registered with Health Professions Council and also accredited for ISO 15189 standards of operation. For quality assurance, the lab subscribes to both the Zimbabwe National Quality Assurance Programme (ZINQAP) and several External Quality Assurance schemes which include, College of American Pathologist (CAP), Medical Research Council (MRC) of South Africa, National Health Laboratory Services (NHLS) of South Africa and INSTAND in Germany

 

LABORATORY SERVICES

Molecular Diagnostics

This is a cross cutting unit, in which molecular assays are being done for detection, quantification of Viral loads, detection of Anti Retro Viral resistance (ARV)… 

TB Diagnostics

TB laboratory which was housed at the National Microbiology Reference Laboratory (NMRL) through an MOU with MoHCC …

 

Microbiology

General Microbiology lab which process culture, identification and drug sensitivity testing of bacterial diseases and also does parasitology and mycology.

Serology

The fourth department is the Serology, cell culture and immunology laboratory which performs immunological investigations including ELISPOT assay,..

 

OUR RESEARCH FOCUS AREAS

The research activities of BRTI are intended to be broad and encompass health problems (in both medical and veterinary fields) that are recognised as priority areas for research in the region. All kinds of research may receive BRTI support, provided that research activities adhere to national and international ethical principles are relevant to health problems of the region and provide opportunities for local capacity building at individual and national levels. During the last 20 years, the BRTI has been responsible for the conduct of more than 100 internationally funded research studies categorised as below:

Health Systems Strengthening

Health System strengthening is a key thematic area at the BRTI and is led by the Centre for International Health and Policy department. Such research evolves around health systems to generate evidence that contributes to policies and initiatives for strengthening and improving health system performance for low and middle income countries.

Clinical Trials

Clinical trials are research studies that explore whether a medical strategy, treatment, or device is safe and effective for humans. These studies also may show which medical approaches work best for certain illnesses or groups of people. Clinical trials produce the best data available for health care decision making.

 

Epidemiology

The epidemiology research program seeks to reduce the HIV/AIDS, TB, Malaria and other infectious diseases burden by conducting large. Nation-wide prospective studies that advance our understanding, survival and long-term survivorship and inform prevention and control programs, policies and guidelines.

 

Social Sciences

Social sciences research is a key focus area at the Biomedical Research and Training Institute and the Centre for International Health and Policy department leads research in this area. Social science research involves systematic analyses social and behavioural attributes in public health to generate evidence based interventions for specific population groups, most affected by lack of access to health.