The WorldWide Antimalarial Resistance Network Clinical Trials Publication Library: A Live, Open-Access Database of Plasmodium Treatment Efficacy Trials

Junko Takata, Paul Sondo, Georgina S. Humphreys, Rebekah Burrow, Brittany Maguire, Mohammad Sharif Hossain, Das Debashish, Robert Commons, Ric Price, Philippe J. Guerin

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    Abstract

    Parasite resistance to antimalarial drugs poses a serious threat to malaria control. The WorldWide Antimalarial Resistance Network (WWARN) aims to provide a collaborative platform to support the global malaria research effort. Here, we describe the “WWARN clinical trials publication library,” an open-access, up-to-date resource to streamline the synthesis of antimalarial safety and efficacy data. A series of iteratively refined database searches were conducted to identify prospective clinical trials assessing antimalarial drug efficacy with at least 28 days of follow-up. Of approximately 45,000 articles screened, 1,221 trials published between 1946 and 2018 were identified, representing 2,339 treatment arms and 323,819 patients. In trials from endemic locations, 75.7% (787/1,040) recruited patients with Plasmodium falciparum, 17.0% (177/1,040) Plasmodium vivax, 6.9% (72/1,040) both, and 0.4% (4/1,040) other Plasmodium species; 57.2% (585/1,022) of trials included under-fives and 5.3% (55/1,036) included pregnant women. In Africa, there has been a marked increase in both P. falciparum and P. vivax studies over the last two decades. The WHO-recommended artemisinin-based combination therapies alone or with a gametocidal drug were assessed in 39.5% (705/1,783) of P. falciparum treatment arms and 10.5% (45/429) of P. vivax arms, increasing to 78.0% (266/341) and 22.9% (27/118), respectively, in the last five years. The library is a comprehensive, open-access tool that can be used by the malaria community to explore the collective knowledge on antimalarial efficacy (available at https://www.wwarn.org/tools-resources/literature-reviews/wwarn-clinical-trials-publication-library). It is the first of its kind in the field of global infectious diseases, and lessons learnt in its creation can be adapted to other infectious diseases.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)359-368
    Number of pages10
    JournalThe American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
    Volume103
    Issue number1
    Early online date18 May 2020
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 8 Jul 2020

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