Two esteemed lecturers from the Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Lagos (UNILAG), Dr. Margaret Ilomuanya and Dr. Mutiat Bolanle Ibrahim, have been granted a total of N900 million (equivalent to over US$600,000) by the Grand Challenges Africa (GC Africa) initiative.
Dr. Ilomuanya, associated with the Department of Pharmaceutics and Pharmaceutical Technology, secured a grant of US$359,100 for her project titled “The Cervical Mucus Barrier as a Target for Artificial Neural Network Inspired Novel Blends of Electrospun Scaffolds.” This innovative endeavor aims to develop a contraceptive device mimicking the natural cervical mucus barrier to prevent unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections.
Meanwhile, Dr. Ibrahim, affiliated with the Department of Pharmacognosy, received a grant of US$259,801.30 for her research titled “Characterisation of Herbal Bioactive for the Development of Spermicides for Female Contraception.” Her project focuses on identifying and characterizing herbal compounds that can serve as spermicides, offering a safe, effective, and affordable alternative to conventional contraceptives.
Both researchers were among the 11 African scholars announced on Monday, February 12, 2024, as recipients of key grants under the GC Africa initiative. This flagship program, led by the Science for Africa Foundation with support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, aims to drive transformative research addressing critical challenges in health and agriculture across the African continent.