The mission of the African Network for Drugs and Diagnostics
Innovation (ANDI) is "To promote and sustain African-led health
product innovation to address African public health needs through
the assembly of research networks, and building of capacity to
support human and economic development". The long-term vision
is "To create a sustainable platform for R&D innovation in
Africa to address Africa’s health needs".
was conceived by the World Health Organization (WHO) through the
Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases
(TDR), and launched as a concept at Abuja in 2008 by several African
institutions, policy makers, Africans in the Diaspora, the African
Development Bank (AfDB) and other stakeholders.
The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) is now the
host agency for ANDI in Africa. ANDI intends to develop and fund a
portfolio of collaborative network projects and leverage existing
capacity in Africa in a manner that will support capacity and
infrastructural development for product research, development and
delivery. The goal is to sustainably discover, develop and deliver
affordable new drugs, vaccines, diagnostics and other health
products (including those based upon natural products and traditional
medicines) to fight and prevent diseases that disproportionately
affect the African continent.
This call follows an earlier call to identify ANDI designated Centres
of Excellence (CoE), which resulted in over 115 applications
covering the 5 sub-regions of Africa and the various stages along
the product R&D pipeline. ANDI intends to align the selected
network projects with relevant CoE for additional technical support,
and to ensure coherence as well as efficient use of available
resources and capacity across Africa.
Through this mechanism, ANDI plans to create a virtual network of
convergent and integrated centres supporting specific projects,
capacity and entrepreneurial development. These in turn could
stimulate pan-African institutional technology transfer and broader
South-South and North-South collaborations.
The specific objectives of this call are:
a) To identify promising and innovative projects at African
institutions (public and private) with potential to result in new
drugs, vaccines, diagnostics, insecticides and other tools to
fight/prevent diseases that are predominant in Africa.
b) To identify institutions and investigators with the capacity and
technology platforms that will partner and support the above objective.
Areas of focus
for the call
ANDI is soliciting letters of intent (LoI) from academic/research
institutions and biotech/ pharmaceutical companies in Africa with the
skills, expertise and infrastructure to conduct research in the
Research & Development projects:
• Product discovery and related basic research
- The identification or optimization of drug targets and leads using
biological techniques, integrated medicinal chemistry, screening and
ADMET (Absorption, Distribution, Metabolism, Excretion and
- Diagnostics discovery projects
- Vaccine discovery projects
- Vector control tool discovery
- Other technology development e.g. medical devices.
• Pre-clinical and clinical product development (drugs and vaccines)
The pre-clinical evaluation of available compounds or biomolecules
with demonstrated efficacy and safety profiles in appropriate
models. The focus of development projects will be to support
proof-of- concept, clinical evaluation or support for registration
especially where the lack of resources, expertise, development
partners have prevented the advancement of such products. If
necessary, ANDI will look to leverage partnerships with public,
private, international and non-governmental organizations to rapidly
advance such projects.
• Traditional Medicines
- Innovative traditional medicines or natural products proposals
outlining a systematic approach in the evaluation of: (i) herbal
remedies; (ii) fully characterized active components or extracts
(with demonstrated efficacy).
- Innovative processes for the standardization and evaluation of
phytomedicines (and where appropriate their assessment in clinical trials).
- The application of biotechnology to improve the quality and yield
of the raw materials.
• Innovations in drug formulation, combination and delivery systems
Identification of efficacious and safe drug delivery methods to
support the development and/or enhance the use of new and existing drugs.
• Innovations in diagnostics technologies and concepts, and
related disease management guidelines
The application of innovative, affordable and practical technologies
to identify new methods for prevention, diagnosis and treatment of disease.
These focus areas should be considered in the context of the
objectives outlined above including capacity building. We strongly
encourage investigators with very strong and high impact projects with
clear delivery timelines to apply.
It is expected that targeted capacity building activities will be
undertaken as part of some of the selected projects and CoE
This call is open to ALL institutions and
investigators based in Africa.
The LoI should include a clear scientific rationale, articulating its
competitiveness, potential for African health impact, milestones and
deliverables aimed at tracking progress. Applicants can be further
guided by the detailed ANDI strategy and implementation plan,
outlined in the Strategic and Business Plan (www.andi-africa.org). The call
is open to applications in both communicable and/or non-communicable
disease areas that disproportionately affect the continent, however,
preference will be given to proposals on neglected diseases of high
relevance in Africa.
LoIs should be formatted as follows:
• Name and institutional contact of principle investigator
• Objective(s) of proposal
• Specific focus or unique aspect of the proposal
• Potential impact for African health
• Scientific rational and data to justify the project
• Research plan summary containing
o research questions and/or hypotheses
o methodological approach
o milestones and deliverables with date
o role of partners (if multiple partners on LoI)
• Requested budget
o with brief justification
• Names, affiliation and contact details of project partners.
• CV of principal investigator
Please note - The total number of pages of the LOI
should not exceed 5 pages.
Applicants can be guided by the Strategic Business Plan on the
funding level per network project (i.e. up to $1 million per network
project). However, it should be noted that fundraising activities
for ANDI are in the early stages; hence the number of supported
projects will depended upon the availability of funds.
Deadline: 28 February, 2011
Selection process and deadlines
The LoIs will be reviewed and evaluated by the ANDI Scientific and
Technical Advisory Committee (STAC). We anticipate that the review
and short-listing process will be concluded by June 2011. Following
this review, only short-listed applicants will be contacted to
develop a full proposal. To ensure alignment with the ANDI mission,
existing efforts and needs, short-listed proposals will be expected
to participate in a proposal development workshop. If a promising
project is missing a critical partner and expertise, the ANDI
secretariat will endeavor to identify such expertise from its
accredited Centres of Excellence or third parties. STAC will review
the resulting final proposals and from these, make their recommendations.
All LoIs should be submitted electronically to firstname.lastname@example.org
no later than 28 February, 2011. Please contact
Dr. Foluke Fakorede (email@example.com) or Dr .Victor
Konde (firstname.lastname@example.org) with