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Table 1 Summary of issues, limitations and proposed solutions

From: Translational research in Uganda: linking basic science to bedside medicine in a resource limited setting

Issues Limitations Proposed solutions
Treatment guidelines published by the Ugandan Ministry of Health are based on international guidelines, especially from WHO WHO guidelines may have been adopted from research conducted in geographical locations with different ethnic populations, medical and cultural practices Establishment of local research capacity to address local disease burdens
Limited funding; Most research funding in Uganda is from external sources Many of the funders come in with already fixed ideas that do not tackle the local problems. Therefore, translational research studies that could impact local health problems rather than more global problems attract less interest from international funders Advocate for more research funding from Uganda government
There are very few active long-standing collaborations with external partners to support the establishment of translational research locally Most international collaborators need well established research facilities with a good track record of research in their area of interest to extend their collaboration Encourage local research in popular areas in order to attract collaborators. Need to develop internationally recognised research institutions and centres of excellence
Poor laboratory infrastructure Most of the translational research laboratories at research centres are accommodated in limited spaces, most of which were not originally meant for laboratories. Such spaces cannot allow the proper infrastructure or expansion required for a basic translational research laboratory Need to establish dedicated translational research laboratories at selected research institutions and hospitals where patients are managed
Limited trained personnel/scientists with specialized skills Most laboratory staff are not well trained to perform the sophisticated laboratory technics Need specialised postgraduate training in the specific areas of biomedical research
Expensive laboratory equipment Very few laboratories can afford the up to date equipment needed to perform the sophisticated procedures Need more funding from both local and external partners to acquire these equipment
Limited research diversity Most laboratories only performing HIV related research Raise awareness of the local disease burden and interest researchers to venture into other common diseases. Researchers and funding agencies should also engage private universities to get involved in translational research