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With the steady increase in globalization of tourism, trade and immigration, and the ever changing physical environment due to global warming and development, there is an increasing risk of the global spread of infectious disease. This is evidenced by the SARS outbreak in 2003, the ever-present threat of pandemic influenza and multi-drug resistant tuberculosis. The efforts to develop an effective HIV vaccine were dealt a major setback when the STEP trial was halted early due to more HIV infections in the vaccine arm of the study. Despite the frustration with the lack of progress, Sekaly and Fauci have noted that now is the time to focus even more closely on a basic understanding of models of HIV prevention and control and creative new approaches are needed. As with most infectious diseases, those most at-risk are often marginalized populations, typically with poor or no access to health care, including those in Aboriginal communities and the poor in developing nations. It has become apparent that the complexity of pathogen replication and disease transmission mimics the complex nature of societies and researchers must be developed who appreciate those complexities and can work together to find solutions. To develop researchers who will have the skills to meet these growing challenges, we seek to renew the International Centre for Infectious Diseases (ICID) Training Program (this time called the International Infectious Disease and Global Health (IID&GH) Training Program to better emphasize the worldwide nature of the program). The IID&GH Training Program will continue the use of a multidisciplinary approach to address the national and global spread of infectious diseases and the impact that they have on global health.

The areas of focus for the Training Program will be
• the greatest current infectious disease threat (HIV),
• potential new threats (emerging infections and microbial resistance),
• how these threats impact the health of individuals in Canada and throughout the world (Global Health).

Bead and braid model of the three foci and different set of themes and of the International Infectious Disease and Global Health Training Program.

Figure: Bead and braid model of the three foci and different set of themes of the International Infectious Disease and Global Health Training Program.

The IID&GH Training Program will establish training sites at each of the University of Manitoba’s (UM) major international research partners (Winnipeg, Canada; Nairobi, Kenya; Bangalore, India; and Medellin, Colombia) (International Collaborating Academic Institutions). Through a program of excellent research projects, research practica, learning visits and intensive multidisciplinary courses, the trainees will not only learn about infectious diseases, HIV prevention, global health, ethics, Aboriginal health issues, knowledge translation and clinical trials, but they will do so at the various international training sites, alongside Canadian-based and international mentors and trainees. The IID&GH Training Program conceptualizes its approach to creating the next generation of multi-disciplinary researchers through the “bead and braid” model (Please see Figure). The beads are the major research areas of investigation (HIV, emerging infections and global health) and connecting them are the four strands, or themes, that flow throughout the program. There are a number of these set of four themes such as the academic program (Aboriginal Health, Ethics, Knowledge Translation and Professional Development), the research pillars of CIHR (Basic, Clinical, Social and Epidemiology) and the training sites (Winnipeg, Nairobi, Medellin and Bangalore). Each of these themes will be woven together and linking the major research foci.


Canadian Institute of Health Research
Department of Medical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases
Canadian Institute of Health Research
Karnataka Health Promotion Trust
Canadian Institute of Health Research
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