Wendy P O'Meara, PhD

Associate Professor of Medicine
Associate Research Professor of Global Health
Campus mail Eldoret Kenya, Box 90519, Durham, NC 27710
Phone (919) 613-4406
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

O’Meara, W. P., A. Noor, H. Gatakaa, B. Tsofa, F. E. McKenzie, and K. Marsh. “The impact of primary health care on malaria morbidity--defining access by disease burden..” Trop Med Int Health 14, no. 1 (January 2009): 29–35. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-3156.2008.02194.x.

PMID
19121148
Full Text

O’Meara, Wendy P., Tabitha Mwangi, Thomas Williams, F Ellis McKenzie, Robert Snow, and Kevin Marsh. “THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN MALARIA TRANSMISSION INTENSITY, CLINICAL DISEASE AND MORTALITY IN AN AREA OF DECLINING TRANSMISSION.” American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 79, no. 6 (December 1, 2008): 241–241.

Scholars@Duke

O’Meara, Wendy P., Abdisalan Noor, Benjamin Tsofa, F Ellis McKenzie, and Kevin Marsh. “THE IMPACT OF ACCESS TO PRIMARY HEALTH CARE ON THE INCIDENCE OF CLINICAL MALARIA IN CHILDREN.” American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 79, no. 6 (December 1, 2008): 182–83.

Scholars@Duke

O’Meara, Wendy P., Phillip Bejon, Tabitha W. Mwangi, Emelda A. Okiro, Norbert Peshu, Robert W. Snow, Charles R. J. C. Newton, and Kevin Marsh. “Effect of a fall in malaria transmission on morbidity and mortality in Kilifi, Kenya..” Lancet 372, no. 9649 (November 1, 2008): 1555–62. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(08)61655-4.

PMID
18984188
Full Text

O’Meara, Wendy P., Tabitha W. Mwangi, Thomas N. Williams, F Ellis McKenzie, Robert W. Snow, and Kevin Marsh. “Relationship between exposure, clinical malaria, and age in an area of changing transmission intensity..” Am J Trop Med Hyg 79, no. 2 (August 2008): 185–91.

PMID
18689622
Scholars@Duke

Ohrt, Colin, Wendy Prudhomme O’Meara, Shon Remich, Peter McEvoy, Bernhards Ogutu, Ramadan Mtalib, and James Sande Odera. “Pilot assessment of the sensitivity of the malaria thin film..” Malar J 7 (January 28, 2008). https://doi.org/10.1186/1475-2875-7-22.

PMID
18226243
Full Text

McKenzie, F Ellis, David L. Smith, Wendy P. O’Meara, and Eleanor M. Riley. “Strain theory of malaria: the first 50 years..” Adv Parasitol 66 (2008): 1–46. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0065-308X(08)00201-7.

PMID
18486688
Full Text

O’Meara, Wendy Prudhomme, William E. Collins, and F Ellis McKenzie. “Parasite prevalence: a static measure of dynamic infections..” Am J Trop Med Hyg 77, no. 2 (August 2007): 246–49.

PMID
17690394
Scholars@Duke

Ohrt, Colin, Peter Obare, Ampon Nanakorn, Christine Adhiambo, Ken Awuondo, Wendy Prudhomme O’Meara, Shon Remich, et al. “Establishing a malaria diagnostics centre of excellence in Kisumu, Kenya..” Malar J 6 (June 12, 2007). https://doi.org/10.1186/1475-2875-6-79.

PMID
17565676
Full Text

O’Meara, Wendy Prudhomme, B Fenton Hall, and F Ellis McKenzie. “Malaria vaccine efficacy: the difficulty of detecting and diagnosing malaria..” Malar J 6 (March 26, 2007). https://doi.org/10.1186/1475-2875-6-36.

PMID
17386083
Full Text

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