Chronic Non-communicable Diseases and Disorders (NCDs) are the leading cause of global mortality,
accounting for 71% of all deaths. It is projected that by 2030, deaths from NCDs in Africa will exceed
deaths due to communicable, maternal, perinatal, and nutritional diseases combined.
is home to 90% of the
300,000 children born worldwide with Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) annually and SCD
Sickle Cell Anemia SSA is associated with 16% of childhood mortality
. SCD is both an NCD and a
recognized as a significant cause of NCD-related morbidity and mortality in persons with (SSA). SCD
related NCDs have been observed in the brain, kidneys, heart, and lungs. The overall objective of the work
that is proposed in this application is to enhance the SCD associated NCD research capacity in Uganda.
This has been informed by the following observations: (a) SCD is very common, affecting over 350,000
people in Uganda, and accounts for 18% of all childhood morbidity
. SCD is also associated with reduced
life expectancy and poor health related quality of life for survivors. (b) Previous studies on children and
adults with SCD in Uganda have highlighted a high prevalence of stroke (6.8%), neurocognitive impairment
(21.5%), acute chest syndrome (22.7%), micro-albuminuria, and acute kidney injury. The team will work to
achieve the overall objective through the following aims: Aim 1: To train a multi-disciplinary team of
research scientists. Aim 2: To increase SCD and associated NCD research capacity across the lifespan.
Aim 3: To strengthen local and regional partnerships for advancing SCD and associated NCD research
training and advocacy. The activities in this application innovatively exploit the access to large numbers of
SCD patients and the multi-disciplinary/inter professional education expertise at Makerere University
College of Health Sciences and Busitema University, both in Uganda to increase the local SCD associated
NCD research capacity. It is anticipated that by the end of the 5-years support, a critical mass of local
research scientists will have been created to support the further growth of a high quality SCD associated
NCDs research and clinical care portfolio, focused on low-cost sustainable interventions for SCD affected
populations in Uganda and other settings including the USA.