Barcelona Centre for International Health Research

Dr. Carlota Dobaño, Dr. Pedro L. Alonso

CRESIB is a new global health research institute developed from some of the leading academic and biomedical research institutions in Barcelona (Universitat de Barcelona, Hospital Clínic de Barcelona, Institut d'Investigacions Biomèdiques August Pi i Sunyer) together with the Catalan Government as a response to the new international health challenges of the 21st century. CRESIB's scientific agenda includes the study of the poverty-related diseases, emerging, re-emerging and immuno-preventable diseases, and health & migration. CRESIB promotes multidisciplinarity and excellence in research, and also collaborates with other research centres from developed and less-developed countries, including the Centro de Investigação em Saúde da Manhiça (CISM) in Mozambique.

CRESIB is recognised as one of the world’s leading centres for the design, execution and evaluation of epidemiological studies, especially randomised controlled trials of malaria intervention tools (drugs, vaccines and bednets among others) in Africa. Studies include a trial of intermittent preventive treatment (IPT) in infants administered through the EPI scheme, a study of the combination of IPT and insecticide-treated nets in pregnant women, and the clinical development of GSK’s candidate malaria vaccine RTS,S (phase I, IIb and III trials to evaluate safety, immunogenicity and efficacy). These trials also involve immunological studies to evaluate the impact of the malaria control tools in the development of immunity, and to assess the immune mechanisms elicited by vaccine candidates, including measurement of antibody and cellular immune responses. The centre is also coordinating two EU collaborative projects (FP6 and FP7) that investigate the development of naturally acquired immune responses to malaria in children and pregnant women.