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Biosciences eastern and central Africa

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  1. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica ICT and Human Capital Development in Africa: Role of Centers of Excellence Kubata Bruno Kilunga Biosciences eastern and central Africa 19-21 November 2006, Cape Town, South Africa

  2. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica Major Issues to be discussed • Major Challenges for Africa • The Need for Research in Bioscience on the Continent • Experience of NEPAD’s Initiative of Centers for Excellence in Bioscience on the Continent

  3. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica Facts and Figureson African Agriculture and Food Security • Sub-Saharan Africa's share of world hunger is rising sharply • Globally: 30% more food/person over past 40 years • Africa: 7% less food/person over past 40 years • Why? • Frequent drought in the semi - arid and arid zones and desertification; Soil erosion and decline in soil fertility; Low level of irrigated agriculture and low water productivity, • Diseases; Loss of biodiversity and General natural resources degradation: • Low productivity of agriculture which is lower than world norms • Facing increasingly competitive world markets • Declining commodity prices for traditional export crops and Declining world export market share, • Extreme poverty with people living on less than US$1 a day

  4. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica Facts and Figures on African Health • Population: ca. 703 millions with annual Population Growth of 2.1% • Life Expectance at Birth: 45.8 years • Control of parasitic Diseases such as Trypanosomiasis, Leishmaniasis and Malaria, and Prevalence of HIV/AIDS

  5. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica Manzini Kampala Dakar A tale of three epidemics

  6. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica HETEROGENEITY OF HIV IN AFRICA 0-0.1% Algeria-0.1% Egypt<0.1% Mauritania-0.6% Mali-1% 1-5% Eritrea-2.7% Sudan-2.6% Senegal-0.8% Djibouti-2.9% Burkina Faso-2% Nigeria-4% Ethiopia-4% Sierra Leone-1% 3-7% Ghana-2% Ivory Coast-7% Uganda-7% Congo B-5% Kenya-7% Congo DR-5% Tanzania-7% Adult HIV Prevalence Angola-3% Zambia-16% Zimbabwe-20% Namibia-20% Madagascar-1% Botswana-35% 15-35% Swaziland-33% Sources: UNAIDS 2004 estimates used unless recent national population-based HIV survey available Lesotho-23% South Africa-16%

  7. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica Region and Country 1988 1990 1995 2000 2003 All Countries 466,419 508,795 580,809 632,781 698,726 Other Asia (- China, S. Korea, Singapore, Taiwan 10,116 10,566 11,355 12,294 15,779 Near East/North Africa 7,896 8,241 9,647 11,111 13,465 Central/South America 5,632 6,886 9,547 14,747 18,933 Sub-Saharan Africa 4,544 4,355 4,161 3,973 4,219 Research Products: International Publications Source: Science and Engineering indicators, 2006 derived from Thompson ISI, Social Science Index and Science Indexes. Facts and Figures on the quality of Science in sub-Saharan Africa

  8. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica S&T Collaboration in Africa BecA Vision To enable African scientists and institutions to use technologies and make technological innovations by undertaking bioscience research and innovation targeted at issues affecting Africa’s development, while accessing the best of science worldwide. BecA Mission To improve the livelihoods of resource-poor people in Africa trough the development and use of new technologies for sustaining agricultural production, improving human health, and conserving the environment.

  9. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica Opportunities of countries and/or institutions to participate in BecA programs

  10. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica BecA Design • BecA Hub and Secretariat • Located on the campus of ILRI in Nairobi, Kenya • Provide common biosciences research platform • Deliver research related services • Facilitate capacity building and training opportunities • Network of regional nodes, National Programs and other laboratories • Distributed throughout institutions in eastern and central Africa • Conduct research on priority issues affecting Africa’s development

  11. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica BecA Core Competencies • Scientific & Technical • Bioinformatics • Biometrics • Diagnostics • Genomics • Functional genomics • Gene sequencing • Molecular breeding • Transformation • Tissue culture • Vaccine technology • Vectors • Non-Scientific • Laboratory management • Equipment maintenance • Biosafety policies and practices • Communication and knowledge management • Information technology • Intellectual property management • Other regulatory management • Partnerships for technology delivery • Science writing • Proposal preparation

  12. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica Plant/crop biotechnology - Genetic transformation - Plant breeding with MAS - Diagnostics - In vitro propagation/tissue culture/ micro-propagation - Genomics/bioinformatics Focus on products - Nutritionally-enhanced crops - Abiotic stresses (e.g., drought, other physical) - Biotic/disease stresses Application on the following crops: - Cereals: Maize, millet, rice, sorghum, wheat - Legumes: Beans, cowpea, groundnut - Vegetative crops: Banana/plantain, cassava, sweet potato - Cash crops: Coffee, cotton, oil palm, and sesame

  13. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica Livestock biotechnology • Animal health/production • Nutrition • Improving disease control • Delivery of genetic change • Animal genetic resources • Specific disease areas • East Coast fever (caused by Theileria parva), • Animal trypanosomiasis, • Contagious Bovine Pleuro Pneumonia (CBPP) • Rift Valley fever virus, African Swine Fever virus, • Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiensei, • Mycobacterium tuberculosis, Brucella abortus, • Mycoplasma mycoides • Anthrax • Avian flu

  14. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica Project Areas Environmental application • Genotyping of indigenous plant and wildlife species • Better characterization • Conservation • Management

  15. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica Some achievements • Establishment of state-of-the-art Bioinformatics facility, • Upgrading of Server and computer training facility to complement the Bioinformatics platform, • Establishment of medium throughput sequencing and genotyping facility featuring.

  16. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica Workshops and symposia • Jan 2005: Sorghum Millet, Rice Annotation Meeting (A meeting for African scientists to understand how to utilise the annotation data) • March 2005:Bioinformatics Workshop • March 2005:African Genome Initiative (AGI) Annual Conference Cracking Africa’s killer diseases co-hosted with BecA, ILRI and ICIPE

  17. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica Capacity building • Nov–December 2004 Training of 21 participants from the region on Molecular Breeding course ‘Unlocking Plant Diversity for the Resource-Poor using the tools of modern genomics, specifically Marker Assisted Selection techniques’ • Ongoing BecA/Rockefeller/Global Challenge Program on Tapping Crop Biodiversity for the Resource-Poor in East and Central Africa, supporting 2 PhD candidates working on Cassava and Sorghum.

  18. Biosciences eastern and centralAfrica Conclusions • NEPAD’s initiative of Centers for Excellence in Biosciences is a new approach for growing and sustaining the African Human Capital. • It adds value and is complementary to the HEIs. Thank you so much for your Attention