Mectizan Expert Committee
The Mectizan Expert Committee (MEC) is an independent body of seven internationally recogized experts in the fields of public health, tropical disease, and ophthalmology established by Merck to provide technical oversight of the Mectizan Donation Program. Mectizan Expert Committee Members are appointed for two to three year terms and meet at least once annually. For recent MEC policy recommendations, please see the policy page.
Dr. Gilbert Burnham, Chair of the Mectizan Expert Committee
Dr. Burnham is a Professor in the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University in the department of international health. He has extensive field experience in onchocerciasis control and has worked on a number of WHO onchocerciasis-related working groups including the WHO Ivermectin Subcommittee and Scientific Working Group on Filariasis and the WHO Onchocerciasis Operational Research Task Force. He also provided assistance to the WHO Special Program for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases analyzing the impact of ivermectin on onchocercal skin disease. Dr. Burnham worked in Malawi to establish a Mectizan distribution program and eye care project and he conducted an evaluation of the Malawi onchocerciasis control program for the International Eye Foundation. He also worked in Uganda on an onchocerciasis control consultation for Deutsche Gesellschaft Technische Zusammenarbeit. Dr. Burnham has published a number of articles on onchocerciasis and other tropical diseases, including an editorial commentary in the Lancet on the use of ivermectin in loiasis endemic areas, a topic frequently discussed during MEC/AC meetings.
Dr. Daniel Boakye, Associate Professor of Entomology & Parasitology at the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research at the University of Ghana
Daniel Boakye, PhD, is also a member of Ghana’s National Task Force on Lymphatic Filariasis in addition to his teaching position at the University of Ghana. Dr. Boakye received his PhD in medical entomology from the University of Leiden in the Netherlands and his masters in applied entomology and parasitology from the University of Jos in Nigeria. He brings experience with both onchocerciasis and lymphatic filariasis to the Mectizan® Expert Committee. Dr. Michel Boussinesq, Directeur de Recherche, Institut de Recherche pour le Developpement, Paris, France Michel Boussinesq, MD, PhD, has worked for more than 15 years on the epidemiology of onchocerciasis and on the strategies to control the disease by ivermectin chemotherapy. Most of his research has been conducted in Cameroon, where he was seconded at the Centre Pasteur. The main objectives of his activities are aimed at evaluating the effects of various regimens of ivermectin on Onchocerca volvulus, and at addressing the issue of the adverse events related to coinfection with the filarial parasite Loa loa. He has also participated, in collaboration with various partners, in research on the modelling of population dynamics of onchocerciasis and loiasis, and on the immunology of onchocerciasis and other nematodiasis.
Dr. Boakye Boatin, Research Leader for UNICEF/UNDP/World UNICEF/UNDP/World Bank/ WHO Special Bank/ WHO Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases
Dr. Boakye Boatin holds a degree in Medicine, International Public Health and Epidemiology. He currently leads the research in integrated community based interventions at the WHO based TDR, the Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Disease. Before taking on the current role, g y p , he managed research in Lymphatic Filariasis and was responsible for the link between the TDR and the Neglected Tropical disease department of the WHO. For over 15 years he worked in onchocerciasis, its epidemiology and it's control through chemotherapy, publishing a wide range of over 40 scientific articles in this field. Most of his work on onchocerciasis was carried out our while working at the Onchocerciasis Control Programme in west Africa (OCP) first as its epidemiologist, during which time the research leading to the strategy of Community Directed Treatment with ivermectin for onchocerciasis was undertaken, its head of Planning Evaluation and Transfer and later as the Director of the Programme. He currently has the task of leading the research to establish how far one can go with community directed interventions as one of the strategies to strengthen Primary Health Care in the disease endemic countries.
Dr. Dominique Kyelem, Program Director, Lymphatic Filariasis Support Center
Dr. Kyelem is Program Director of the LF Support Center in Atlanta. He serves as a key liaison of the LF Support Center to various partner organizations such as the Global Alliance to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis (GAELF), WHO, the World Bank, GlaxoSmithKline, and other organizations involved with LF elimination. Dr. Kyelem is responsible for developing and implementing various program objectives of the Global Programme to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis (GPELF), as well as for the day-to-day management of project related activities.
Prior to joining the LFSC, Dr. Kyelem was in charge of the unit of communicable diseases including lymphatic filariasis in the Ministry of Health of Burkina Faso; he worked at various levels and sectors of the health system of his country for more than 14 years. He was the pioneer of national NIDs for polio eradication district- wise implementation in Burkina Faso. Dr Kyelem has been a consultant for WHO since 2001 supporting African countries in lymphatic filariasis elimination activities and is a member of several advisory committees.
Dr. Kyelem holds a medical degree from the University of Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso), a Masters in Public Health degree from the University of Heidelberg (Germany) and a PhD degree from the University of Liverpool (United Kingdom).
Dr. Mamadou Traore (bio coming soon)
Dr. Sam Zaramba (bio coming soon)
LF Advisors for Albendazole Coordination
Dr. Amy Klion, Staff Physician, US National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, USA
Amy Klion, M.D. has a broad range of experience in parasitic diseases having worked in research areas such as host immune responses to filarial infection and diagnostic approaches in parasitic disease. Dr. Klion began participating in Mectizan Expert Committee/Albendazole Coordination meetings in 1999 as Special Advisor on Lymphatic Filariasis. In addition to her expertise on LF, she also has research experience with Loa loa and onchocerciasis. In 2001, Dr. Klion also contributed her expertise to the Scientific Working Group on Serious Adverse Events in Loa-endemic Areas held in Liverpool, UK.
Dr. Charles Mackenzie, Michigan State University, Dimondale, Michigan, USA
Charles Mackenzie, BVSc, PhD, joined the Mectizan Expert Committee/Albendazole Coordination as Special Advisor on Lymphatic Filariasis in 1999 following his post with the Mectizan Donation Program as ad interim Director for the Lymphatic Filariasis Program. Dr. Mackenzie has extensive experience in the field with both onchocerciasis and lymphatic filariasis. He traveled to Sudan on numerous occasions to ensure that Mectizan is being effectively distributed there in spite of the civil conflict and other constraints there. Dr. Mackenzie is a professor of veterinary pathology at Michigan State University (MSU) which is a Global Alliance to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis (GAELF) partner. MSU's GAELF role also includes fellowship opportunities for students in endemic countries to study at MSU. Dr. Mackenzie directs the LF activities at MSU, and travels extensively to endemic countries to help them develop the capacity to distribute Mectizan and albendazole for LF in Africa, and albendazole and diethylcarbamazine in all other endemic countries.
African Program for Onchocerciasis Control (APOC)
African Program for Onchocerciasis Control/Technical Consultative Committee (TCC)
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Onchocerciasis Elimination Program for the Americas