Wendy P O'Meara, PhD

Associate Professor in Medicine
Associate Research Professor of Global Health
Campus mail Eldoret Kenya, Box 90519, Durham, NC 27710
Phone (919) 681-7711
Email address wendy.omeara@duke.edu

Dr. O'Meara has been working in the field of malaria diagnosis, treatment, and drug resistance since 2004. She is an Associate Professor at Duke University Medical School in the Division of Infectious Diseases, visiting professor at Moi University, and the Co-Field Director of Research for AMPATH.  She has been based full-time in Kenya since 2007.

Dr. O’Meara’s team is interested in improving rational drug use for suspected malaria fevers through expanding the use of diagnostic tools in the community and in health facilities.  As many as 90% of fevers that seek treatment in the formal sector receive antimalarials, and it is estimated that only 20% of those buying antimalarials over-the-counter in the retail sector actually have malaria.  Such overuse poses a significant threat to the continued efficacy of first-line antimalarials. Dr. O’Meara has conducted several randomized controlled trials in western Kenya to test interventions designed to improve the use of information from malaria diagnostic testing in order to target antimalarials to those with confirmed infection. In 2005, she helped to establish the Malaria Diagnostic Centre of Excellence in Kisumu, Kenya.

Recently, she concluded a case-controlled study with colleagues at Moi University that identified the major determinants of insecticide treated bednet failure in western Kenya. Among other results, the study showed that asymptomatically infected household members may be a risk factor for children living in the same household. Current work is extending this observation by leveraging variability in key parasite genes to describe the spatial mixing of malaria infections and track generations of infections from humans to mosquitoes (collaboration with Steve Taylor’s lab).

Dr. O’Meara has experience in marrying innovative spatial techniques with epidemiologic outcomes.  Recent work includes an analysis of health systems factors that contribute to early childhood mortality in sub-Saharan Africa.

Education and Training

  • Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2003

Publications

Nkumama, Irene N., Wendy P. O’Meara, and Faith H. A. Osier. “Changes in Malaria Epidemiology in Africa and New Challenges for Elimination..” Trends Parasitol 33, no. 2 (February 2017): 128–40. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pt.2016.11.006.

PMID
27939610
Full Text

Levitt, Brandt, Andrew Obala, Scott Langdon, David Corcoran, Wendy Prudhomme O’Meara, and Steve M. Taylor. “Overlap Extension Barcoding for the Next Generation Sequencing and Genotyping of Plasmodium falciparum in Individual Patients in Western Kenya..” Sci Rep 7 (January 24, 2017). https://doi.org/10.1038/srep41108.

PMID
28117350
Full Text

Simmons, Ryan, Leonard Mboera, Marie Lynn Miranda, Alison Rand, Gillian Stresman, Elizabeth Turner, Randall Kramer, Chris Drakeley, and Wendy Prudhomme O’Meara. “A LONGITUDINAL COHORT STUDY OF MALARIA EXPOSURE AND CHANGING SEROSTATUS IN A MALARIA ENDEMIC AREA OF RURAL TANZANIA.” In American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 97:220–21. AMER SOC TROP MED & HYGIENE, 2017.

Scholars@Duke

Abel, Lucy, Rebeccah Nanjala Wafula, Daniel Evans, Steve M. Taylor, Wendy Prudhomme O’Meara, and Andrew A. Obala. “IMPLICATIONS OF REDUCED SUSCEPTIBILITY TO INSECTICIDES IN MALARIA VECTORS IN AN AREA WITH HIGH ITN COVERAGE.” In American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 97:456–456. AMER SOC TROP MED & HYGIENE, 2017.

Scholars@Duke

Saran, Indrani, Elisa Maffioli, Diana Menya, Jeremiah Laktabai, Elizabeth Turner, and Wendy P. O’Meara. “DOES THE EXPERIENCE OF MALARIA TESTING INCREASE TRUST IN THE TEST? EVIDENCE FROM WESTERN KENYA.” In American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 97:297–297. AMER SOC TROP MED & HYGIENE, 2017.

Scholars@Duke

Menya, Diana C., Indrani Saran, Jeremiah Laktabai, Joseph Kirui, and Wendy P. O’Meara. “MALARIA DIAGNOSTIC TESTING ASSOCIATED WITH SIGNIFICANT INCREASES IN COST OF CARE FOR FAMILIES IN RURAL WESTERN KENYA.” In American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 97:298–298. AMER SOC TROP MED & HYGIENE, 2017.

Scholars@Duke

O’Meara, Wendy Prudhomme, Jeremiah Laktabai, Manoj Mohanan, Alyssa Platt, Elisa Maffioli, Joseph Kirui, Lucy Abel, Paige Meier, Elizabeth Turner, and Diana Menya. “A CLUSTER-RANDOMIZED TRIAL TO TARGET SUBSIDIZED ARTEMISININ COMBINATION THERAPY (ACT) IN THE RETAIL SECTOR USING A COMMUNITY-BASED TESTING AND VOUCHER SCHEME.” In American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 97:333–34. AMER SOC TROP MED & HYGIENE, 2017.

Scholars@Duke

Anthopolos, Rebecca, Ryan Simmons, and Wendy Prudhomme O’Meara. “ESTIMATING THE EFFECT OF HEALTH SYSTEMS ON CHILDHOOD MORTALITY IN SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA FROM 1996-2013.” In American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 97:217–217. AMER SOC TROP MED & HYGIENE, 2017.

Scholars@Duke

Oyibo, Wellington A., Nnenna Ezeigwe, Godwin Ntadom, Oladipo O. Oladosu, Kaitlin Rainwater-Loveth, Wendy O’Meara, Evaezi Okpokoro, and William Brieger. “Multicenter Pivotal Clinical Trial of Urine Malaria Test for Rapid Diagnosis of Plasmodium falciparum Malaria..” J Clin Microbiol 55, no. 1 (January 2017): 253–63. https://doi.org/10.1128/JCM.01431-16.

PMID
27847373
Full Text

Masika, Wechuli Geoffrey, Wendy Prudhomme O’Meara, Thomas L. Holland, and Janice Armstrong. “Contribution of urinary tract infection to the burden of febrile illnesses in young children in rural Kenya..” Plos One 12, no. 3 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0174199.

PMID
28323886
Full Text

Pages