Monday, December 11, 2023

The University of Nairobi Vice Chancellor, Prof. Stephen Kiama presided over the official launch of Levonorgestrel Intrauterine System effect on Anemia (LISA Trial) project on 11th December, 2023.

The LISA trial is a 5 year research project implemented jointly by UoN – UNITID and FHI360. It is designed to evaluate effectiveness of the Levonorgestrel Intrauterine system in raising hemoglobin and serum ferritin levels among women in a marginalized, anemic population, thereby alleviating anemia while meeting a family planning need.

Anemia is a stubborn problem affecting 38% of women in resource poor settings in Africa & Asia, contributing to an estimated 18% of maternal deaths. A multi-pronged approach is needed to prevent and alleviate anaemia, and it is highly plausible that retention of iron from using the LNG IUS can become another prong in the strategies to help alleviate anemia.

Speaking during the launch, Prof. Kiama said the findings from LISA Project have the potential to shape future projects, inform government policies, and drive positive change in the health of women and subsequently of communities and the nation.

“As a university, we need to give hope to the people of Kenya. This research project does that, and is aligned with the vision of the university. We shall support this work,” Prof. Kiama said.

The LISA trial will recruit 600 women in a low income area (Kangemi) who will be randomized into 2 study arms (LNG-IUS & combined oral pills) and followed up for 18 months.

The Deputy Vice Chancellor, Research Innovation and Enterprise Prof. Margaret Hutchinson who accompanied the VC to the launch congratulated the LISA trial research team led by Dr. Faith Thuita from the Department of Public & Global Health at UoN Faculty of Health Sciences and Dr. David Hubacher from FHI360.

 “Research should seek solutions for actual societal issues and challenges.  Congratulations to the team involved in research that is focused on addressing women’s health in low income areas,” Prof. Hutchinson said.

Others present at the launch were; Prof. George Osanjo, Dean, Faculty of Health Sciences, Prof. Julius Oyugi, Director University of Nairobi Institute of Tropical Medicine (UNITID).