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  • Sub-Saharan Africa news in brief: 8–22 Oct 2007

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Below is a round up of news from or about Sub-Saharan Africa for the period 8–22 October

Africa needs technology regulation laws
African countries need laws to both regulate and protect new technologies, says Calestous Juma of the US-based Harvard University. Juma says critics' concerns are welcome, but this must not put off governments from discussing laws like those on agricultural biotechnology and vandalism of data cables currently being debated in Kenya's parliament. More>>

ICRISAT plans agri-incubator for Mozambique
The Institute of Agricultural Research of Mozambique and the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) have agreed to establish a farm business incubator near Maputo in Mozambique. The incubator will foster agricultural enterprises that could benefit the country's industry. ICRISAT is also helping to set up an ethanol plant using smallholder farmers' sweet sorghum. More>>

Africa: not so urban?
The speed of urban growth has been exaggerated in low- and middle-income countries, particularly African ones, according to a report by the International Institute for Environment and Development. The report says future urban growth will be heavily influenced by HIV/AIDS and the availability of treatments, as well as global warming and carbon emissions. More>>  [1.6MB]

Uganda to manufacture anti-retroviral drugs
Uganda will soon produce its own antiretroviral drugs after a Kampala pharmaceutical factory was commissioned to produce triple-therapy antiretrovirals for the treatment of HIV/AIDS. The factory will also produce the artemisinin-based anti-malaria therapy Lumartem, using artemisinin sourced from local farmers. More>>

Tropical legume research project launched
Researchers in Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Mali, Niger and Senegal are among the 12 African nations taking part in a new project that aims to increase nutrient-rich legume crop yields among smallholder farmers. The tropical legumes project runs under the Consultative Group on Agricultural Research (CGIAR). More>>

Pig parasite under the spotlight
Researchers are increasing efforts against porcine cysticercosis, a disease that causes severe livestock loss and 50,000 human deaths annually. Members of the Cysticercosis Working Group in Eastern and Southern Africa discussed developments at a meeting at Eduardo Mondlane University in Mozambique this month. More>>  [45Kb]

How malaria clogs up blood vessels
A study involving Ugandan scientists has moved researchers one step closer to a vaccine against malaria. Researchers from Makerere University and MedBiotech Laboratories in Kampala helped discover how the parasite triggers complex chemical reactions that make red blood cells clump up, causing severe side effects. More>>

Gabon no longer hosting AIDS/STI conference
Libreville in Gabon will no longer host the 15th International Conference on AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Infections in Africa (ICASA), originally scheduled for December this year, due to a lack of preparation. The meeting of HIV/AIDS researchers has been rescheduled for December 2008, in Dakar, Senegal. More>>

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