PANTHER’S Portfolio

Focusing on preparedness and response to address African patients’ research needs

PANTHER’S Portfolio

Focusing on preparedness and response to address African patients’ research needs

PANTHER’s five-year strategic plan aims to prepare (and, as required, respond) to up to five infectious diseases with epidemic/pandemic potential selected from the African public health priorities. 

Our portfolio is dedicated to developing, implementing, and sustaining a ready-to-use living clinical research platform which integrates research capacity in clinical care in Africa and revolves around 3 main areas of activity:

Core preparedness

Transversal area consisting of mapping, disease-agnostic operational preparedness (such as protocol templates, data collection system, regulatory preparation, and SOPs), legal, financial, and training activities which will be applied to the other two areas of work specifically focused on diseases.

Disease-specific preparedness

This area involves TPP updates, scientific selection, protocol adjustments, regulatory pre-approval, infrastructure updates, disease-specific training, and coordination activities. The WHO (R&D Blueprint, EMRO, AFRO) and Africa CDC priority diseases, will form the basis for selecting disease areas for which the Platform should be prepared to respond and is based on COVID-19 and Ebola lessons learned.

  • Site preparedness activities are currently conducted for Lassa fever and mpox in countries reporting low cases.
  • Scientific and strategic preparedness is ongoing for flu.


This entails mobilising the platform for a disease-specific rapid response.

  • Response activities are currently conducted for mpox and COVID-19.


Lassa Fever

Lassa fever is one of the WHO R&D Blueprint priority diseases. This hemorrhagic fever is endemic in  Benin, Ghana, Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Sierra Leone, Togo and Nigeria. Case fatality rates vary between 1 and 15%, as early diagnosis is critical with many viral diseases. A Platform clinical trial testing several therapeutic options is underway by the INTEGRATE Consortium in Nigeria, , the country reporting the highest number of cases annually. This work is being coordinated by Prof. Sylvanus. A. Okogbenin, leader of PANTHER’s Lassa Hub.

PANTHER with its partners (ALIMA and BNITM) will start exploring the needs and prepare one site in Guinea (Nzerekore or Gueckedou), in Liberia (Phebe hospital) and one other site in Nigeria (Abakaliki) whilst setting-up a mobile team to manage the sporadic and scattered cases in Benin.

For more information, see Lassa fever ( and Lassa Fever – Africa CDC


Preparing countries that report some cases, running a placebo-controlled study with tecovirimat in those that are ready.


Conducting thorough preparedness scientific activities (diagnostic, small molecules, ….) with a focus on patients at higher risk.