Medical Research Centers in Mali and Uganda: Slideshow

Denis Burkitt
Denis Burkitt, the Irish surgeon who in 1957 described in East Africa the childhood lymphoma now known as Burkitt Lymphoma (BL).
Child with BL
A child with BL. Courtesy of John Ziegler
Burkitt and patients
Burkitt with two of his patients at Mulago Hospital near the Makerere Medical School in Kampala, Uganda, circa 1960. Courtesy of John Ziegler
Boy with BL
A boy with BL responded like many others to a single intravenous dose of the chemotherapeutic drug Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide). Courtesy of John Ziegler
Tissue Culture
In 1963, Anthony Epstein and his colleagues at Middlesex Hospital in London grew BL cells (shown here under a conventional light microscope) in tissue culture from a tumor specimen provided by Burkitt. Courtesy of John Ziegler
Virus particles
Virus particles observed by Epstein et al., in the culture medium from BL cells and later named Epstein-Barr Virus. Courtesy of John Ziegler
Treatment Center
The Lymphoma Treatment Center, the precursor to the Uganda Cancer Institute (UCI), established in the 1960s at Mulago Hospital. Courtesy of John Ziegler
National Cancer Institute Staff
Three U.S. National Cancer Institute staff members who led the founding of the UCI about 1967. From left to right: John Ziegler, then a research fellow; Paul Carbone; and Gordon Zubrod. Courtesy of John Ziegler
Ziegler and patients
John Ziegler with young patients at the Lymphoma Treatment Center. Courtesy of John Ziegler
Ugandan Minister of Health
Paul Carbone and John Ziegler taking the Ugandan minister of health on a tour of the UCI in 1967. Courtesy of John Ziegler
Apollo Milton Obote
Apollo Milton Obote, president of Uganda from 1966 to 1971 and again from 1980 to 1985.
Idi Amin
Idi Amin, the president of Uganda from 1971 to 1979. Credit: United Nations
Charles Olweny
Charles Olweny helped lead the UCI during a prolonged period of political instability in the 1970s and 80s. Back in Uganda after many years abroad, he now chairs the UCI’s Board of Directors. He was raised in a small town near the Kenyan border. His father, a teacher, encouraged him to pursue a medical career. He attended a missionary school in Kampala then earned medical degrees at Makerere University, where he was directed toward oncology by John Ziegler. Credit: Henry Lubega/The Daily Monitor
Yoweri Museveni
Yoweri Museveni, who has been president of Uganda since his forces ousted Obote’s forces in 1986. Credit: Russell Watkins/Department for International Development
Susan Desmond-Hellman and Nelson Sewankambo
Susan Desmond-Hellmann, shown here with a Ugandan medical scientist, Nelson Sewankambo, worked at the UCI with her husband, Nicholas Hellman, from 1989 to 1991, when they were research fellows at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). Now the Chancellor of UCSF, Desmond-Hellman will become the CEO of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in May 2014. Courtesy of Susan Desmond-Hellmann.
Samuel Mbulaiteye
Samuel Mbulaiteye, a tenured scientist in the Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics at the NCI, at the time of his graduation from Cambridge University in 1990. Raised in Uganda, Mbulaiteye’s father developed lymphoma and was treated initially at the UCI by John Ziegler. Mbulaiteye, who was nine, observed his father’s treatment closely for years. Inspired by his father’s care, he attended Makerere Medical School and received training in epidemiology at Cambridge. Courtesy of Samuel Mbulaiteye
Larry Corey
Larry Corey (second from left), the current president of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (FHCRC) located in Seattle, Washington, at the ground-breaking for the new research building at the UCI in October 2011. Corey’s interest in virus-induced cancers in East Africa spurred the development of a long-term relationship between the UCI and the FHCRC. Others, from left: Corey Casper; former Ugandan prime minister, Apolo Nsibambi; and former UCI director, Charles Olweny. Courtesy of the FHCRC
Casper, a physician-scientist at the FHCRC and active participant in collaborations with the UCI, with a young patient at the UCI. Credit: Jacqueline Koch
Jackson Orem
Jackson Orem, a graduate of Makerere University Medical School, has been the director of the UCI since 2004. Orem was raised in a small village in northern Uganda. A few years after seeing his first BL patients in 1987 as a medical student, Orem met with the ubiquitous John Ziegler, who happened to be in Uganda as a Fulbright Scholar. Ziegler advised him to study oncology at the UCI. After pursuing further training at Case Western University, he returned to the UCI. Credit Joanne Silberner
FHCRC and UCI Staff
Members of the staffs of the FHCRC and the UCI in the clinical ward of the UCI. Photograph by Clayton Hibbard, Reproduction courtesy of FHCRC
The FHCRC Project House in Kampala for trainees and other visitors to the UCI. Courtesy of the FHCRC
Signing MoU
Signing of a memorandum of understanding between the FHCRC (represented by then-president Lee Hartwell) and the UCI (represented by Jackson Orem), April 25, 2008, in Kampala. Courtesy of the FHCRC
Ground-breaking for the new UCI research facility by Ugandan Vice President Edward Ssekandi, October 4, 2011. Courtesy of the FHCRC
Plans for UCI Building
A drawing of the plans for the new UCI research building, co-funded by the FHCRC, the government of Uganda, and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). Courtesy of the FHCRC
Cancer death estimates
Estimates by Globocan of the rising numbers of annual cancer deaths that will occurworldwide, especially in low and lower middle income countries, by 2030 unless additional steps are taken. LMIC: Lower Middle Income Countries; HIC: Higher Income Countries
Posters illustrating the expanded attention recently given by international agencies, including the United Nations (UN), to noncommunicable diseases as a source of morbidity and mortality in all parts of the world, including developing countries. These were produced at the time of the UN Special Meeting on Non-Communicable Diseases (NCD) in 2011. Courtesy of the Indian NCD Network (left) and the Pan American Health Organization (right)
Mali map
Mali has an ancient culture and was part of West African empires that saw their height in the fourteenth century. It is a former French colony that gained its independence in 1960; democratic national elections were first conducted in the early 1990s, but political instability emerged in the early 2010s. Credit: Wikimedia Commons/TUBS
MRTC logo
The logo for the Malaria Research and Training Center (MRTC) in Bamako, founded with the help of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) at the NIH, in conjunction with the World Health Organization (WHO) and USAID. Courtesy of Ogo Doumbo
Colin Powel
A visit to the MRTC by U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell and his wife Alma conducted by MRTC Director Ogo Doumbo (front right), circa 2001. Courtesy of Ogo Doumbo
Receiving line
The receiving line for the opening of the meeting of African, European, and American scientists and research funders in Dakar, Senegal, hosted by the NIH and the Pasteur Institute in 1997. The author and Maxime Schwartz, the then-director of the Pasteur Institute, are third and fourth from the left, flanked by members of the government of Senegal. Courtesy of the Multilateral Initiative on Malaria
Louis Miller
The author's guide during his MRTC 1997 visit: Louis Miller, an American malariologist from NIAID who was instrumental in the founding of the MRTC. Credit: NIAID
MRTC Staff
Some of the MRTC Laboratory staff. Courtesy of Ogo Doumbo
Lunch at MRTC
Lunch during a visit to the MRTC’s field station in Bancoumana. From left, Doumbo, the author, and Miller. Courtesy of Louis Miller
Alpha Oumar Konare
Alpha Oumar Konare, president of Mali from 1992 to 2002; Konare received a doctorate in archeology from Warsaw University in 1975. Credit: Wikimedia Commons/MEDEF
Malaria Tree
The frontispiece, entitled The Tree of Fevers, in Francesco Torti’s Therapeutice Specialis (1712). Courtesy of the John Carter Brown Library at Brown University
Charles Laveran
Charles Laveran discovered Plasmodia, the protozoan cause of malaria, in the bloodstream of Algerian patients with the disease in 1880.
Plasmodia in blood stained blue; the red spheres are erythrocytes (red blood cells).
Roland Ross
Roland Ross identified the Anolpheles mosquito as the insect vector for the malarial pathogen while working in India in 1897. With kind permission of the Library & Archives Service, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
An Anolpheles mosquito. Credit: CDC
Malaria Map
Demonstration of zones of high incidence of malaria throughout the globe, with areas of resistance to treatment with chloroquine shown in brown. Credit: Wikimedia Commons/Percherie
Malaria Map 2
Africa, including Mali, has a disproportionately high incidence of symptomatic malaria as shown by the relative size of nations. Credit: Worldmapper (#229)
Great Mosque of Djenne
Historic treasures of Mali: The Great Mosque of Djenne, made from sun-baked earth bricks. Credit: U.S. Department of Agriculture
Architecture in Mali
Domestic architecture in Mali: a village in the Dogon region. Credit: Wikimedia Commons/Dario Menasce
Mario Uoluzzi
Mario Coluzzi (right), a parasitologist in Rome (with Tom Wellums from the NIH), played an important role in the origins of the MRTC. Courtesy of Tom Wellems
Philippe Ranque
Philippe Ranque, a French parasitologist who taught at the University of Bamako for many years and was a mentor for Yeya Toure and Doumbo, played an important role in the origins of the MRTC. Courtesy of Ogo Doumbo
Tore Godal
Tore Godal (now an advisor to the Norwegian prime minister), who ran the WHO’s Tropical Disease Research facility and helped the MRTC obtain some of its initial financial support. Credit: U.S. Mission Geneva
Yeya Toure
Yeya Toure, who is now at the Tropical Disease Research agency in Geneva, is a Malian scientist who helped lead the MRTC. Toure was raised in a poor rice farming family in Gao, in northern Mali. Fascinated by mosquitoes and their role as disease vectors, he entered a doctoral program at the University of Bamako, then received a master’s degree in Bamako and started a “local” doctoral program in entomology, when he came under the tutelage of Philippe Ranque. Courtesy of Ogo Doumbo
Ogo Doumbo
Ogo Doumbo, the current director of the MRTC. Doumbo grew up in a small village in Mali. His grandfather was a traditional healer, and he was the child in his family selected by the socialist government for advanced schooling. He proceeded to Bamako for university and medical school, where he met his first parasitologists, including Ranque. Doumbo received a medical degree from the University of Bamako in 1979 and worked as a surgeon in rural Mali before deciding to try research. Courtesy of Ogo Doumbo
Robert Gwadz
Robert Gwadz, an American malariologist from NIAID at the NIH who was instrumental in the founding of the MRTC. Credit: NIAID
Dick Sakai
Dick Sakai, an NIAID staff member, who has served as laboratory manager at the MRTC for twenty years and was honored as a Chevalier of Mali. Courtesy of Dick Sakai
Mali map 3
Sites in Mali that now house collaborative activities with the MRTC.
Islamist fighters
Islamist fighters in northern Mali in 2012. Mali experienced political upheavals in the early 2010s.
A recent NIAID collaborator with the MRTC, Peter Crompton (right of the podium), celebrating his receipt of a U.S. Presidential Young Investigator Award with colleagues in Bamako in 2012. Courtesy of Peter Crompton
Abdoulaye Djimde
Abdoulaye Djimde, a leader among the youngest generation of Malian parasitologists. Djimde resolved to become a physician after watching his brother die of malaria. However, he was not accepted at the medical school in Bamako and entered the pharmacy program. He worked in a lab at the MRTC as a volunteer under the supervision of two U.S. scientists, Chris Plowe and Tom Wellums. Plowe brought Djimde to the NIH and then to the University of Maryland for his PhD. Courtesy of Abdoulaye Djimde

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