Abebaw Fekadu Wassie

Full name Abebaw Fekadu Wassie
Education attended MD, Addis Ababa University, Gondar College of Medical Sciences, Ethiopia, 1989

MRCPsych, Royal College of Psychiatrists, London, UK, 2003

MSc, Psychiatry (Distinction), Cardiff University, UK, 2005. Thesis Title: “Pattern of affective and psychotic disorders among a unique island population in Ethiopia.”

Certificate of Completion of (Speciality) Training (CCT) General Adult Psychiatry, Postgraduate Medical Education and Training Board (PMETB), London, UK, 2007

Clinical Certificate in Clinical Psychopharmacology, British Association for Psychopharmacology, London, UK, 2009. Thesis Title: “Modelling treatment-resistant depression”.

PhD in Medical Science with an orientation towards psychiatry, Umea University, Sweden, 2010. Thesis Title: “Affective disorders in rural Ethiopia”

Academic rank Associate Professor
Working for AAU Since 2009
Administrative positions held Secretary, Institutional Review Board, College of Health Sciences: November 2009-October 2012

Recognitions, memberships of international bodies/ journals – editorial roles/ initiatives etc

  • Member, Royal College of Psychiatrists;
  • Commissioner: Lancet Commission on the Future of Health in Africa
  • Programme Director, Ethiopian Psychiatric Association;
  • Finance Officer, the Royal College of Psychiatrists, African Branch;
  • Technical Working Group, Rehabilitation, Ministry of Health;
  • mhGAP Ethiopia Working Group (formerly secretary), Ministry of Health and WHO;
  • Expert WHO mhGAP Intervention Guide development;
  • Expert on mental health, IMAI (WHO);
  • Technical Working Group on Strengthening Human Resources for Mental, Neurological and Substance Use Disorders in Sub-Saharan Africa (Institute of Medicine);
  • Secretary, Institutional Review Board, College of Health Sciences, Addis Ababa University (November 2009-October 2012);
  • Member, Ethiopian Medical Association;
  • Lifetime Member, Ethiopian Public Health Association


Address Campus: College of Health Sciences

Building: College of Health Sciences

Floor number: 6th

Office room no.: Department of Psychiatry

Office tel.: +251(0)118962052

Mobile: +251(0)912894975

University email ID: Abebaw.Fekadu@aau.edu.et

Alternative email ID: abe.wassie@kcl.ac.uk

Research interests
  • clinical trials
  • psychopharmacological studies
  • treatment-resistant mood disorders (TRMD),
  • services development
  • measurement of psychopathology and
  • Cultural aspects of depression.

Principal Investigator (PI) for:

1. PRIME, a health service study;

2. Clinical trials evaluating efficacy of minocycline (MINOS trial) and Folate/B12 (Folate trial) and RISE for treatment resistant schizophrenia;

3. Butajira Study on SMI-(the largest cohort study on SMI in Africa);

Co-PI: TASCS/AFFIRM; Co-investigator on HEAT, BIABER & EMERALD, health service researches.

Collaborations with researchers from King’s College London, UK and Harvard, USA on TRMD and clinical trials.

Publications in reputable journals  

1)     Hanlon C, Luitel NP, Kathree T, Murhar V, Shrivasta S, Medhin G, Ssebunnya J, Fekadu A, Shidhaye R, Jordans M, Petersen I, Kigozi F, Tomlinson M, Thornicroft G, Lund C, Bruer E, Patel V, De Silva M, Prince M. Challenges and opportunities for implementing integrated mental health care: a situation analysis from five low- and middle-income country districts. PLOS One 2014; In Press

2)     Tsigebrhan R, Shibre T, Girmay M, Fekadu A, Hanlon C. Violence and violent victimization in people with severe mental illness in a rural low-income country setting: a comparative cross-sectional community study. Schizophrenia Research 2013; In Press

3)     Tunnard C, Rane L, Wooderson SC, Markopoulou K, Poon L, Fekadu A, Cleare AJ. The impact of childhood adversity on the clinical course of Treatment-Resistant Depression. Journal of Affective Disorder 2014; 152-154:122-130

4)     Fekadu A, Mesfin M, Medhin G, Alem A, Teferra S, Gebre-Eyesus T, Seboxa T, Assefa A, Hussien J, Lemma MT,Borba C,Henderson DC, Hanlon C, shibre T. Adjuvant therapy with minocycline for schizophrenia (The MINOS Trial): Study protocol for a double-blind randomized placebo controlled trial. Trials 2013; 14:406

5)     Vergunst F, Fekadu A, Wooderson S, Tunnard C, Rane L, Markopoulou K, Cleare A. Longitudinal course of symptom severity and fluctuation in patients with treatment resistant unipolar and bipolar depression. Psychiatry Research 2013; 207:143-149

6)     Assefa A, Shibre T, Asher L, Fekadu A. Internalized stigma among patients with schizophrenia in Ethiopia: a cross-sectional facility-based study. BMC Psychiatry 2012; 12:239

7)     Lund C, Tomlinson M, De Silva M, Fekadu A, Shidhaye R, et al. (2012) PRIME: A Programme to Reduce the Treatment Gap for Mental Disorders in Five Low- and Middle-Income Countries. PLoS Medicine 9(12): e1001359. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001359

8)     Fekadu A, Rane L, Wooderson SC, Poon L, Markopoulou K, Cleare AJ. Prediction of longer-term outcome of treatment-resistant depression in tertiary care. British Journal of Psychiatry 2012; 201:369-375

9)     Shibre T, Medhin G, Teferra S, Wakwoya A, Berhanu E, Abdullahi A, Alem A, Fekadu A. Predictors of carer-burden in schizophrenia: a five-year follow-up study in Butajira, Ethiopia. Ethiopian Medical Journal 2012; 50:125-133

10)Rane LJ, Fekadu A, Papadopoulos AS, Wooderson SC, Poon L, Markopoulou K, Cleare AJ. Psychological and physiological effects of caring for patients with treatment-resistant depression. Psychological Medicine 2012; 42:1825-1833

11)Teferra S, Shibre T, Fekadu A, Medhin G, Wakwoya A, Alem A, Jacobsson L. Five-year clinical course and outcome of schizophrenia in Ethiopia. Schizophrenia Research 2012; 136:137-42

12)Teferra S, Shibre T, Fekadu A, Medhin G, Waqwoya A, Alem A, Kullgren G, Jacobsson L.  Five-year mortality in a cohort of people with schizophrenia in Ethiopia. BMC Psychiatry 2011, 11:165

13)Fekadu A, Wooderson S, Rane, LJ, Markopoulou, K, Poon L, Cleare AJ. Long term impact of residual symptoms in treatment-resistant depression. Candian Journal of Psychiatry 2011; 56:549-557

14)Wooderson SC, Juruena MF, Fekadu A, Commane C, Donaldson C, Cowan M, Tomlinson M, Poon L, Markopoulou K, Rane L, Donocik J, Tunnard C, Masterson B, Cleare AJ. Prospective evaluation of specialist inpatient treatment for refractory affective disorders. Journal of Affective Disorders 2011; 131:92-103

15)Rane LJ, Fekadu A, Wooderson S, Poon L, Markopoulou M, Cleare AJ. Discrepancy between subjective and objective severity in treatment-resistant depression: Prediction of treatment outcome. Journal of Psychiatric Research 2010; 44:1082-1087

16)Fekadu A, Shibre T, Cleare AJ. Toxoplasmosis as a cause for behaviour disorders – overview of evidence and mechanisms. Folia Parasitological 2010;57:105-113

17)Fekadu A, Cleare A J. Pseudoresistant Bipolar Depression. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry 2009; 70(10):1477

18)Fekadu A, Wooderson SC, Markopoulo K, Cleare AJ. The Maudsley Staging Method for Treatment Resistant Depression: Prediction of longer-term outcome and persistence of symptoms. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry 2009; 70: 952-959

19)Shibre T, Alem A, Abdulahi A, Araya M, Beyero T, Medhin G, Deyassa N, Negash A, Fekadu A. Trimethoprim as adjuvant treatment in schizophrenia: a double-blind, randomized placebo-controlled clinical trial. Schizophrenia Bulletin 201; 36:846-851

20)Fekadu A, Wooderson SC, Markopoulo K, Donaldson C, Papadopoulos A, Cleare A. What happens to patients with treatment-resistant depression? A systematic review of medium to long term outcome studies. Journal of Affective Disorder 2009; 116: 4-11

21)Fekadu A, Wooderson SC, Donaldson C, Markopoulou K, Masterson B, Poon L, Cleare A. A multidimensional tool to quantify treatment resistance in depression: The Maudsley Staging Method. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry 2009: 70:177-184.

22)Fekadu A, Cleare A. “Scientific validity” of mental health studies in developing countries. BMJ.com. Rapid responses for Summerfield (2008), 336 (7651) 992-994.

23) Alem A, Kebede D, Fekadu A, Shibre T, Fekadu D, Beyero T, Medhin G, Negash A, Kullgren G. Clinical course and outcome of schizophrenia in a predominantly treatment naïve cohort in Ethiopia. Schizophrenia Bulletin 2009; 35:646-654

24) Fekadu A, O’Donovan MC, Alem A, Kebede D, Church S, Jhons L, Medhin G, Prince M, Shibre T. Validity of the concept of minor depression in a developing country setting: Ethiopia. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease 2008; 196:22-28

25)Fekadu A, Alem A, Medhin G, Shibre T, Cleare A, Prince M, Kebede D. Utility of the concept of minor depressive disorder: Evidence from a large rural community sample in a developing country setting. Journal of Affective Disorder 2007; 104:111-118

26)Fekadu A, Desta M, Alem A, Prince M. A descriptive analysis of admissions to Amanuel Psychiatric Hospital in Ethiopia. Ethiopian Journal of Health Development 2007; 21:173-178

27)Fekadu A, Alem A, Hanlon C. The status of alcohol and drug abuse in Ethiopia, Past, present and future. African Journal of Drug & Alcohol Studies, 2007; 6: 39-53

28)Fekadu A, Kebede D, Alem A, Fekadu D, Mogga S, Negash A, Medhin G, Beyero T, Shibre T. Clinical outcome in bipolar disorder in a community-based follow-up study in Butajira-Ethiopia. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica 2006; 114: 426-434

29)Kebede D, Alem A, Shibre T, Deyessa N, Negash A, Beyero T, Medhin G, Fekadu A. Symptomatic and functional outcome of bipolar disorder in Butajira, Ethiopia. Journal of Affective Disorder 2006;90:239-249

30)Fekadu A, Bisson JI. Neuroleptic malignant syndrome: diagnostic and therapeutic dilemmas. Behavioural Neurology 2005; 16:9-13

31)Leekassa R, Bizuneh E, Alem A, Fekadu A, Shibre T. Community diagnosis of common skin diseases in the Zay Islands, Ethiopia. Ethiopian Medical Journal 2005; 43:189-195

32)Kebede D, Fekadu A, Alem A, Beyero T, Shibre T, Deyessa N. The distribution of mental disorders among an isolated island community in Southern Ethiopia. Ethiopian Medical Journal 2005; 43:71-78

33)Fekadu A, Shibre T, Alem A, Kebede D, Kibreab S, Negash A, Owen MJ. Bipolar disorder among an isolated island community in Ethiopia. Journal of Affective Disorder 2004; 80:1-10

34)Negash A, Kebede D, Alem A, Melaku Z, Deyessa N, Shibire T, Fekadu A, Fekadu D, Medhin G, Jacobsson L, and Kullgren G. Neurological Soft Signs in Bipolar I Disorder patients. Journal of Affective Disorder 2004; 80:221-230

35)Shibre T, Negash A, Kullgren G, Kebede D, Alem A, Fekadu A, Fekadu D, Jacobsson L, Kullgren G. Schizophrenia: illness impact on family members in a traditional society—rural Ethipia. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology 2003; 38:27-34

36)Kebede D, Alem A, Shibre T, Negash A, Fekadu A, Fekadu D, Deyassa N, Jacobsson L, Kullgren G. Onset and clinical course of schizophrenia in Butajira-Ethiopia—a community-based study. Social Psychiatry & Psychiatric Epidemiology 2003; 38:625-631

37)Shibre T, Kebede D, Alem A, Negash A, Kibreab S, Fekadu A, Jacobsson L and Kullgren G. An evaluation of two screening methods to identify cases with schizophrenia and affective disorders in a community survey in rural Ethiopia. International Journal of Social Psychiatry 2002; 48:200-208

38)Shibre T, Kebede D, Alem A, Kibeab S, Meladu Z, Deyassa N, Negash A, Fekadu A, Fedadu D, Medhin G, Negeri C, Jacobsson L, Kullgren G. Neurological soft Signs (NSS) in 200 treatment naïve cases with schizophrenia: a community based study in a rural setting. Nordic Journal of Psychiatry 2002; 56:425-431

39)Shibre T, Negash A, Kullgren G, Kebede D, Alem A, Fekadu A, Fekadu D, Medhin G, Jacobsson L. Perception of stigma among family members of individuals with schizophrenia and major affective disorders in rural Ethiopia. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology 2001; 36:299-303

40)Fekadu A, Kebede D, Alem A, Shibre T. Use of psychiatric rating instruments in Ethiopia. Ethiopian Medical Journal 2000; 38:191-203

41)Fekadu A, Wakwoya A. Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome: A case report. Ethiopian Medical Journal 1999; 37:  195-198

42)Fekadu D, Fekadu A, Alem A. Conforming to International Classification of Diseases: A Critique on Health Information Reporting System of Ethiopia. Ethiopian Journal of Health Development 1999; 13: 281-283.

Book chapters

43) Fekadu A. Mood Disorders. In: Ndetei D, Zabo C. (eds.) Contemporary psychiatry in Africa: A review of theory, practice and research, Acrodile Publishing, Nairobi, 2011, pp. 155-204

44)  Cleare AJ, Fekadu A, Rane LJ. Affective  Disorders. In: Wright P (ed.) Core Psychiatry. Saunders (Elsevier), London 2012, pp 287-311

45) Hanlon C, Fekadu A. Psychiatry. In: Farrar J, Lalloo D, White NJ, Junghanss T, Hotez JP, Gagandeep K (eds.) Manson’s Tropical Infectious Diseases, 23rd ed. Saunders (Elsevier).  2012 (In Press)

46)Hanlon C, Fekadu A, Patel V. Interventions for Mental Disorders. In: Patel V, Prince M,  Cohen A, Minas H (eds.) Global Mental Health: Principles and practice. Oxford University Press, Oxford. 2014, pp 252-278.