Talk by Godwin Inalegwu Ogbole - Neuroimaging in Africa: A Tale of Two cities?

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Africa is rich in human and natural resources yet poor in human capacity and health indices. Globally, neuroimaging has become the fulcrum of neuroscience research and has experienced exponential growth in the last decade. However, Africa and African neuroscience researchers appear to be leading from behind. In this talk, I will examine 2 contradictory faces of African neuroimaging/neuroscience research in 2 regions (Northern Africa and sub-Saharan Africa) and in 2 selected countries (Nigeria and South Africa). I will highlight the challenges and opportunities in neuroimaging research as well as the disparities in resources, training, and competencies among African neuroscience researchers. I will describe our present research output and contributions in 2 disease conditions; Stroke and Epilepsy. Stroke, within the NIH-funded Stroke Investigative Research and Educational Network (SIREN) and Systematic Investigation of Blacks with Stroke-Genomics (SIBS-Genomics) projects. Epilepsy, within the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) supported-Image Quality Transfer (IQT) project; aimed at enhancing clinical decisions from Low-field MRI in paediatric Epilepsy in developing nations. Finally, I will demonstrate the need for greater recognition and support for African neuroscience researchers, research diversity and equitable funding in Africa.