Professor J. Kevin Baird
Infectious diseases in Indonesia
Delivering health care in Indonesia is a challenge, made more difficult by the geography and distances. Our EOCRU unit specialises in clinical trials on tropical infections, particularly Plasmodium vivax malaria. Current treatments with primaquine are effective but very toxic for patients with G6PD deficiency. Better point of care diagnostics can help us treat all patients safely.
The global burden of Plasmodium vivax malaria is obscure and insidious
Until recently, Plasmodium falciparum dominated the malaria research landscape, and Plasmodium vivax infection was considered benign and inconsequential. We now know that this is not true: if not properly diagnosed and treated, P. vivax can lead to life-threatening syndromes and death.
Professor of Malariology
- Head of Unit, Eijkman Oxford Clinical Research Unit, Indonesia
Eijkman Oxford Clinical Research Unit
Kevin is Head of Unit at the Eijkman-Oxford Clinical Research Unit (EOCRU). This was created in 2008 by agreement between the Eijkman Institute for Molecular Biolology (EIMB, Ministry of Science & Technology) and the University of Oxford to collaborate on clinical, laboratory, and field research on infectious diseases of clinical and public health importance in Indonesia. EIMB hosts EOCRU as an integrated component of the Institute at its state-of-the-art facility in central Jakarta. EOCRU undertakes joint collaborative research endeavours that bring together partners at EIMB, the Faculty of Medicine Universitas Indonesia (FMUI) and its Indonesia Medical Education and Research Institute (IMERI) in Jakarta. We also engage colleagues at the Faculty of Medicine Universitas Sumatera Utara (FMUSU) at Medan, Faculty of Medicine Universitas Hasanuddin (FMUH) at Makassar, the Faculty of Medicine Universitas Nusa Cendana (FMUNC) at Kupang, as well as the Indonesian Army Health Research Centre (HRC-TNI-AD) in Jakarta. The core work of EOCRU is clinical trials and has involved diagnostics, therapeutics, mosquito vector control, and vaccination interventions relevant to malaria, tuberculosis meningitis, and cryptococcal meningitis. New arrival Dr. Raph Hamers manages the Universities of Indonesia and Oxford Clinical Research Laboratory (IOCRL) at FMUI and oversees Unit efforts to expand collaborations on infectious diseases in Jakarta and elsewhere. The Unit conducts basic laboratory research on pharmacogenetic issues like glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency and impaired cytochrome P-450 2D6 metabolism, both as related to the treatment of vivax malaria with the drug called primaquine. Dr. Iqbal Elyzar manages the Geospatial Epidemiology group at EOCRU and regularly interacts and collaborates with various Ministries of the Indonesian government with regard to measuring mapping relevant disease burdens and movement of people within Indonesia.