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NIH's Fogarty Center Grants $9.2M for International Informatics Programs

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The Fogarty International Center at the National Institutes of Health has awarded $9.2 million to support health informatics programs in South America, Africa, and India.

The National Human Genome Research Institute and the National Library of Medicine also are participating in the international informatics projects, which are aimed at training scientists in low- and middle-income nations to design information systems and use computer-supported management and analysis in biomedical research.

"The application of informatics allows our clinicians in low-resource settings to leverage new technologies in order to speed discoveries," Fogarty Director Roger Glass said in a statement. "These new awards will enable researchers to better analyze data, compare results among populations and quickly share findings with colleagues around the world."

Two of the grants will go to new informatics programs in South America. One program, a collaboration between the University of Pittsburgh and Javeriana University in Bogota, Colombia, will focus on developing individuals' capacities in clinical informatics. Another grant will fund a collaboration between Oregon Health and Science University and the Italian Hospital of Buenos Aires, Argentina, that will develop clinical and translational research informatics resources.

Another grant will help create the Andean Global Health Informatics Research and Training Center, a regional center of global health informatics that will be administered by the Cayetano Heredia University in Lima, Peru. It will include participation by the US Naval Medical Research Center Detachment in Lima, the University of Cauca in Colombia, the Andina University of Simon Bolivar in Ecuador, and the University of Washington.

Another funded collaboration will involve the University of Georgia, the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation Rene Rachou Research Institute, and Brazil's Federal University of Minas Gerais and Oswaldo Cruz Institute. This group will use the funding to support an existing training project by expanding it into new areas of bioinformatics, epidemiology, and molecular evolution.

A grant to the University of California, San Diego, will support Sao Paulo's Biomedical Research Informatics for Global Health Training program, including an expansion of informatics curricula and training for researchers in Mozambique.

Vanderbilt University will use an award to fund a new informatics training partnership between India's National AIDS Research Institute in Pune and the National Institute of Epidemiology in Chennai.

South Africa's University of KwaZulu-Natal will use its new grant for informatics research and training programs through a collaborative initiative involving institutions in Uganda, South Africa, and Zimbabwe. The pan-African effort will support post-graduate programs in informatics and it will help universities establish medical informatics training programs.

Another grant will support development of an East African Center of Excellence in Health Informatics, which will build on a collaboration between Indiana University and Moi University in Kenya.

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