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Drug shop in NigeriaConvincing fake antimalarials are a major public health disaster in many regions.

This has led to deaths from malaria and to inaccurate reports of artemisinin resistance. During the lifetime of the ACT Consortium, we had insufficient information on the scale of this problem in most malaria-affected areas, but it was expected to spread globally.

Check out the video

Analysing the quality and authenticity of ACT drugs from ACT Consortium on Vimeo.

In Africa, antimalarial drugs were frequently of poor quality or expired, although fake antimalarials (in which there are usually no active ingredients) were less common. Unless easily affordable (i.e. heavily subsidised) ACTs are provided through both public and private outlets, it seemed likely that fake ACTs would penetrate markets rapidly as the demand for ACTs increases. 

Research questions addressed by the consortium

  • To identify and develop inexpensive and easily deployed tests for fake or sub-optimal drugs that can be used near point-of-sale of antimalarial drugs.
  • To develop and test an effective and sustainable sampling panel for early identification of fake and substandard drugs entering the market.
  • To set up a network to detect fake antimalarial drugs and support the work of individual countries' drug regulatory authorities. 


Learn about our project and resources on assessing the quality of ACTs, or download a summary of our research findings.