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Supporting the Development of a Drug Discovery Hub in Ghana

Supporting the Development of a Drug Discovery Hub in Ghana

Project Lead(s)
Project Background 

The Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research (NMIMR) and other departments of the University of Ghana and other local universities have had lose network of researchers in drug discovery research. This project aims to unite these groups, prime the network with an integrated drug discovery project in malaria, through which to develop the human capacity and infrastructure towards the ultimate goal of building a drug discovery hub in Ghana.

Objectives/Research Areas 

The overall  vision  (10-15  years)  is  to establish  a  drug  discovery  capability  within  Ghana, capable of undertaking hit discovery, hits to lead and lead optimization across a range of diseases relevant  to  Ghana  and  the  West  African  region. The project objectives include: 

  • Build a screening cascade and drug discovery pathway for antimalarial drug discovery within Ghana.
  • Validate and characterise in detail the hit series.
  • Initiate hit- to-lead chemistry on at least 2 MMV series.
  • Drive one series to an early lead.
  • Consolidate and further develop current capabilities in antimalarial screening and medicinal chemistry.
Ongoing Activities  
  • Synthesis and characterization of small molecules for antimalarial assessment.
  • Consolidation of antimalarial screening assays.


External Collaborator(s) 
Prof. Ian Gilbert - University of Dundee, Scotland.
Dr. Susan Farrell - University of Dundee, Scotland
Prof Kevin Read - University of Dundee, Scotland
Dr Susan Wyllie – University of Dundee, Scotland
Prof. Kelly Chibale – University of Cape Town, South Africa
Dr Susan Winks – University of Cape Town, South Africa.
Miss Jessica Akester – University of Cape Town
Dr. Jingzhao Song, University of Pennsylvania, USA
Dr. James Duffy – Medicines of Malaria Venttures (MMV)
Dr. Arnold Forkuo – Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST)
Lgenia – United States of America
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation