There is a longstanding evolutionary arms race between malaria-causing Plasmodium parasites, Anopheles mosquitoes, and human populations. The remarkable ability of both parasite and vector to thwart public health interventions by evolutionary adaptation represents a major obstacle to malaria elimination. Malaria also exerts a strong selective pressure on the human genome, which has led to natural mechanisms of disease resistance.
By studying natural genetic variation in all three genomes, we aim to develop a deeper understanding of the genetic and molecular mechanisms that underlie these evolutionary processes, and to translate this scientific understanding into more effective and sustainable strategies for malaria elimination and vaccine development.
Our team works closely with colleagues at the University of Oxford and with partners in more than 30 malaria-endemic countries through two projects, MalariaGEN and the MRC Centre for Genomics and Global Health.
We also collaborate with a number of groups within the Malaria Programme, as well as Honorary Faculty and Fellows (Martin Donnelly, Chris Newbold, Abdoulaye Djimdé). Click ‘Read more’ for a list of research questions.