Ane Fisker, Associate Professor
Area of interest: Effects og preventive health interventions on child health in low-income countries. Including nonspecific effects of vaccines and vitamin A in observational and randomized studies. Focus on implementation of the programmes and the consequences there of.
- Research in non-specific effects of vaccines and vitamins
- Health and Demographic Surveillance System
- Implementation of randomized studies in low-income countries
Own research projects:
I am responsible for Bandim Health Project's Health and Demographic Surveillance System (HDSS) on the contryside in Guinea-Bissau. Based on this platform, I evaluate the effects of campaigns and changes in vaccination policies.
Bandim Health Project's HDSS is longitudionelt: all followed individuals are followed through repeated visits, enabling highly accurate measures of mortality in the area. The international organizations assess frequent changes in mortality patterns over time through serial cross-sectional studies, in which the individuals are not followed (e.g. UNICEF MICS and USAID's DHS). In collaboration with researchers from Johns Hopkins University and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, we seek to examine how the methods used to measure early child mortality in such surveys can be improved.
Lead supervisor for: PhD-student, Anshu Varma, 2016-20; CVIVA/Bandim Health Project & OPEN.
Project: The effect of a Measles Vaccination Campaign on General Morbidity and Mor-tality among Children aged 9-59 months in Rural Guinea-Bissau - a cluster randomized controlled trial (RECAMP)
Description: Billions doses of vaccine have been given in low income countries in vaccine campaigns over the past decades to eradicate polio and measles by 2020. Observational studies suggest that the vaccination campaigns against polio and measles have significant beneficial effects on overall morbidity and mortality. Anshu's project will measure the effect of polio -and measle vaccine campaigns in general hospitalization and mortality among children aged 0-59 months in Guinea-Bissau in a randomized study. Within the framework of Bandim Health Project's demographic surveillance system comprising 182 village clusters and more than 18,000 children under 5 years, we will implement a cluster randomized trial.
Lead supervisor for: PhD-student Line M. Pedersen, 2019-21; CVIVA/Bandim Health project and OPEN, SDU
Project: Evaluating the effects of polio vaccines on general child health in Guinea-Bissau
Description: As part of the global plan for polio-extermination, the so-far used living oral polio vaccine (OPV) will be replaced by the inactive poliovaccine (IPV) before 2024. Both vaccines protect against polio, but their effect on general health is possibly very different: Previous studies have shown, that the living OPV protects against non-related diseases, where as the non-living polio vaccine IPV possibly increases the sensitiveness to a long list of infections, particularly for girls.
Through a line of studies based on the observational data and data from randomized studies, Line will examine the real effects of OPV and IPV with a view to answer the questions about whether the change from OPV to IPV will increase child mortality and child sickness, when the child is deprived of the positive effects of OPV and instead exposed to the negative effects of IPV.
Co-supervisor for: Sebastian Nielsen, 2019-22, PhD-student; CVIVA/Bandim Health Project and OPEN, SDU
Project: The eradication paradox: Can stopping oral polio vaccine have negative consequences?
Description: As part of the extermination of polio, multiple national campaigns have been done in low-income countries during the last 20 years, where all children under the age of 5 have been given an oral polio vaccine. Simultaneously, the child mortality has dropped significantly. Based on data from Bandim Health Project and other similar projects in multiple low-income countries, Sebastians project is looking to examine what role these campaigns have played for the child mortality. The project uses both existing statistic methods and is developing new statistic methods by using computer simulation that can detect sudden drops in child mortality and examine if these drops can be linked to campaigns.