Preventing and containing trypanocide resistance in the cotton zone of West Africa

The goal of this project is to protect and improve the livelihoods of resource-poor livestock keepers in agro-pastoral production systems in sub-humid West Africa. The project is contributing to this goal by enhancing the current and future efficacy of trypanocides as an effective component of improved, integrated strategies for control of trypanosomosis (sleeping sickness). This collaborative project represents the second phase of a regional research project titled Improving the management of trypanocide resistance in the cotton zone of West Africa: A coordinated regional study.

The first phase focused on adapting methods and evaluating the extent of resistance to trypancides in northeast Guinea, southern Mali and southwest Burkina Faso, and testing integrated control strategies that would reduce the risk of emerging drug resistance.

The second phase of the project builds on these results to evaluate resistance and raise awareness and capacity to address the problem across much of the rest of the zone, and scale up the prevention strategies developed during the first phase. The second phase will also consolidate the results achieved to date, closing the circle from problem identification to development and dissemination of appropriate responses to resistance and establishing the capacity across the cotton zone to support and sustain those responses.
Appropriate strategies will also be developed for containing — and, if possible, reversing — trypanocide drug resistance in the pockets characterized in Phase 1. A specific study will be undertaken to assess the impact of the efforts to date to understand and address the problem of drug resistance.
  1. Evaluation of suspected “hot spots” and risk communication of trypanocide resistance in at least two other countries across the cotton zone.  This output will build the capacity of national agencies to use the diagnostic tools developed during Phase 1, while at the same time raising awareness of the problem and motivating dissemination of the best-bet prevention strategies. Additional surveillance techniques based on genetic markers will be validated.
  2. Best-bet strategies for preventing trypanocide resistance widely disseminated and supported.  The project will facilitate the uptake and dissemination of knowledge and media tools developed during Phase 1 by appropriate partners in the public, private, and civil sectors, including policy makers, to ensure livestock keepers have access to support for continued use of trypanocides while minimizing the risk of developing resistance.
  3. Best-bet integrated strategies for containment and reversal of resistance evaluated. Trials of resistance containment strategies will be conducted in hot spots identified in Phase 1. Mathematical models will be extended to better understand resistance genesis and decay, and make confident recommendations for resistance containment outside the study area.
  4. The impact of research and development investments in controlling trypanocide resistance assessed.  An impact assessment component is proposed to evaluate investments made to date to improve the management of resistance and their contribution to the ultimate goal, as stated above, considering both the sequence of research activities over the past ten years and the scaling up dissemination of knowledge products taking place in Output 2.
  5. National and regional capacity further enhanced to support the monitoring and control of trypanocide resistance.
  • Free University of Berlin, Germany
  • Leibniz University of Hannover, Germany
  • Centre International de Recherche-Développement sur l’Elevage en Zone Subhumide, Burkina Faso
  • International Trypanotolerance Centre, The Gambia
  • Unité Nationale de Lutte contre la Trypanosome, Burkina Faso
  • Direction Provinciale des Ressources Animales, Burkina Faso
  • Laboratoire Régional d’Elevage de Tenkodgo, Burkina Faso
  • Laboratoire Central Vétérinaire, Mali
  • Institut d’Economie Rurale/Centre Régional de la Recherche Agricole Sikasso, Mali
  • Projet de Lutte contre la Mouche Tsétsé et la Trypanosomose, Mali
  • Pan-African Tsetse and Trypanosomiasis Eradication Campaign, Mali
  • Direction Nationale de l’Elevage et l’Institut de Recherche Agronomique de Guinée, Guinée
  • Tsetse and Trypanosomosis Control Unit, Ghana
  • Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique du Bénin, Benin

Delia Grace (veterinary epidemiologist)

Hippolyte Affognon (agricultural economist)

Roger Pellé (microbiologist)

Tom Randolph (agricultural economist)


For more information, please contact the project coordinator, Tom Randolph