Published: 01/30/2020

Stanford’s Global Health Seed Grant program catalyzes research and encourages the development of innovative solutions to global health challenges. With early-stage funding, Stanford Global Health supports scientific and clinical research as well as innovations in health care implementation or delivery. The program seeks to build Stanford’s vibrant global health community and in-country collaborations with international partners.

From a competitive pool of applicants, Stanford Global Health held a comprehensive review process to select the winners. With generous contributions from the Stanford School of Medicine, President’s Office, Stanford Emergency Department, the Sean N Parker Center for Allergy and Asthma Research and the Woods Institute for the Environment, we are proud to support the nine winners.

School Health Promotion in Grenada: Empowering Youth as Lifelong Agents of Change
Principal Investigator: Desiree LaBeaud

Research Team: Abby King and the Grenadians

In the small island nation of Grenada, where rates of mosquito-borne disease exposure are greater than 90%, new and innovative community-level interventions are urgently needed to control outbreaks. This study will integrate an innovative, readily exportable and scalable experiential citizen science teaching module titled “Our Voice” into an existing country-wide grade-school intervention, in order to test the multi-level impacts of engaging youth as agents of change not only in preventing mosquito-borne diseases but also in improving local environments in more general and sustainable ways.

Sub-clinical disease and gut microbial carriage of Schistosoma mansoni in adult women in rural Burkina Faso 
Principal Investigator: Ami Bhatt
Research Team: Scott Hazelhurst, Hermann Sorgho

In this project, a multi-national, multi-disciplinary team of physicians, health demographers, biologists and computer scientists will come together to evaluate the microbiome of adults and the prevalence of helminth (worm) colonization in rural Burkina Faso. We anticipate this work will shed foundational light on the relationship between helminthic infections and the microbiome, and will also inform our understanding of alternative presentation of helminthic disease in middle-aged adults. 

Integrating kidney health assessment in a natural farming experiment in India
Principal Investigator: Shuchi Anand
Research Team: Nikhil Srinivasapura Venkateshmurthy, Lindsay Jaacks

In response to a grass-roots movement to reduce farmer debts and increase climate resilience, one of India’s largest agricultural states is planning a roll out of natural farming. There is a known epidemic of kidney disease occurring in agricultural communities which is widely suspected to be due to agrochemical exposure, and thus we will leverage the roll out of this natural farming intervention to determine whether it also helps protect workers’ kidney health. 

Identify DNA methylations associated with measures of obesity in mother-child pairs in the deprived and global multi-ethnic birth cohorts
Principal Investigator: Mohsen Fathzadeh
Research Team: Mark Cullen, Thomas Quertermous, Michael Snyder, Deborah Lawlor, John Wright, Dan Mason, David Rehkopf, Manuel Rivas, Themistocles Assimes

Low- and Middle-income communities and certain ethnicities are more prone to face childhood obesity and the later-life risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. This project will study global birth cohorts by considering gene-environment interactions, including exposure to maternal gestational fasting glucose in order to empower global precision medicine studies and provide primary inferences of early-life genetic regulation of body fat distribution.

The Cutaneous Microbiome in Burn Patients: A Novel Source of Diagnostics and Therapeutics
Principal Investigators: Kovi Bessoff, Faith Muchemwa, Michael Snyder
Research Team: Ami Bhatt, David Katzenstein, Prof Emer, John Coller

Burns are one of the most common causes of injury globally, with much of the morbidity and mortality concentrated in women and children from lower socioeconomic status. This project will investigate how changes in the bacteria that normally live on our skin may be used to improve outcomes for burn patients.

Risk factors for an emerging threat: patterns of antibiotic-resistant Campylobacter in households in rural Sitapur, India
Principal Investigators: Alexandria Boehm, Gary Darmstadt
Research Team: Marlene Wolfe, Vishwajeet Kumar, Saravanan Matheshwaran, Christine Pu, Jenna Davis

Campylobactera bacteria that commonly causes diarrhea and other health concerns in young children, can be transmitted by humans and animals through the environment and is of high concern for developing antibiotic resistance. However, there is a lack of data about the distribution of Campylobacter in low- and middle-income countries and factors associated with antibiotic resistance; this project will assess Campylobacter in samples from humans, animals, and the household environments to identify likely sources of antibiotic resistant infection in children in rural Sitapur, India and inform development of more targeted interventions to prevent transmission.

Leptospirosis in Informal Urban Settlements in Indonesia and Fiji
Principal Investigator: Ben Pinsky
Research Team: Joelle Rosser, Stephen Felt, Giulio De Leo, Stephen Luby, Amelia Turagabeci, Renne Galloway, Ancha Ansariadi

Climate change and urbanization are increasing risk factors associated with the spread of leptospirosis, a potentially fatal infection transmitted to humans by contact with water contaminated by the urine of infected animals. This study will characterize leptospirosis distribution, model routes of transmission, and lay the foundation for evaluating how a nature-based water infrastructure project can interrupt transmission in informal urban settlements in Indonesia and Fiji.

Elucidating the effects of physical and sexual violence on HIV viral load suppression and ART adherence among adolescent girls in Kenya: Prevalence, associations, and targets for future intervention
Principal Investigators: Clea Sarnquist, Yvonne Maldonado, Hellen Barsosio
Research Team: Michael Baiocchi

Interpersonal violence and HIV infection contribute significantly to poor adolescent health outcomes in many low-income settings. However, little is known about how experiences of violence affect HIV treatment outcomes. We aim to understand: (1) how violence leads to negative HIV outcomes, and (2) how to create and implement an intervention to improve the health and wellbeing of HIV-infected adolescents experiencing violence.

Perinatal Transmission Dynamics of Antimicrobial Resistance in Bangladesh: A comparison of hospital- and home-based births
Principal Investigators: David Relman, Eric Foote
Research Team: Ashley Styczynski, Mohammed Badrul Amin, Utpal Mondal, Md. Mahbubur Rahman, Fahim Tajwar

Antimicrobial resistance threatens the lives of the most vulnerable, including newborns in low- and middle-income countries, though the pathways of transmission leading to resistant infections are unclear. To determine the factors underlying newborn infections caused by multi-drug resistant bacteria in Bangladesh, this study will evaluate for similarities between resistant bacteria recovered from newborns, their mothers, and the perinatal environment and compare this with community and healthcare exposures.