Addis Ababa, Ethiopia — On 27 February 2023, the Africa CDC, in collaboration with Institut Pasteur de Dakar (IPD), launched a 3-day training on molecular diagnosis of Marburg Virus Disease (MVD). The training workshop targeted 10 participants from 5 African Union (AU) Member States: Equatorial Guinea, Cameroon, Central Africa Republic, Gabon, and the Republic of Congo.
The three-day training workshop is designed to cover a combination of theoretical and hands-on training on collecting and handling MVD suspected specimens; isolation of nucleic acid; detection of Marburg Virus using RT-PCR; interpretation and interpretation and reporting of results. Furthermore, the Africa CDC will distribute Marburg Virus RT-PCR detection kits to expand testing in the participating Member States. "Diagnostic capacity is key in responding to the reported MVD outbreak in Equatorial Guinea. This training is timely and critical to build and expand MVD testing capacity and capability in Equatorial Guinea and across the region," said Dr. Yenew Kebede, Head Division of Laboratory Systems and Networks at the Africa CDC.
Dr. Amadou Sall, CEO of IPD commented, "Establishing diagnostic capacity for MVD is an immediate step in the response to the outbreak in Equatorial Guinea and preparedness in the region. So, we are very delighted to partner with the Africa CDC to host this training on the RT-PCR based detection of Marburg virus. The training covers a range of topics from collection and handling of specimen to RT-PCR testing and reporting of results to inform response and containment strategies".
"Africa CDC will continue to support Equatorial Guinea in strengthening capacity to respond to the MVD outbreak. We have deployed experts to assess the situation and support the MOH in the response," said Dr Ahmed Ouma Ogwell, Ag--Director of Africa CDC.
The participants are expected to put into practice the skills and knowledge gained from this training to expand MVD testing in their home country. Furthermore, the training workshop will create a network of regional laboratory experts to collaborate and share expertise and resources in MVD detection and response.
The training was coordinated and supported through the Africa CDC - Africa Pathogen Genomics Initiative (Africa PGI).