African scientists have begun to study genomic influences on disease across their continent, from differences in the progression of HIV in children, to developing new sequencing methods for the Ebola virus. The Human Heredity and Health in Africa (H3Africa) Initiative supports much of this research. It was launched to facilitate the study of genomics and environmental determinants of common diseases with the goal of improving the health of African populations.

An important part of H3Africa is the Pan African bioinformatics network H3ABioNet, comprising 32 Bioinformatics research groups distributed throughout 15 African countries and 2 American partner institutions. The network aims at developing a bioinformatics capacity across the continent, connecting various researchers and students over vast distances through web based conferencing. Accordingly, the network uses video conferencing extensively to bring members together on a regular basis.

Read how South African’s NREN SANReN extended the service to local researchers and innovators through its network, and helped researchers to collaborate more efficiently, on the In The Field blog.

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