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Research & Development

The MRC is currently conducting several research projects in collaboration with several national and international research institutes and centres and these are:

  • The first-ever double-blind clinical trial on eumycetoma treatment.

Eighty-four patients with confirmed eumycetoma due to Madurella mycetomatis were enrolled so far in this first-ever double-blind clinical trial on eumycetoma treatment. The trial is a randomised, double-blind phase II proof-of-concept superiority trial of fosravuconazole 200 mg or 300 mg weekly dose versus itraconazole 400 mg daily dose, all three arms in combination with surgery, in patients with eumycetoma in Sudan. It is sponsored by the Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative (DNDi), Geneva and Eisa Ltd., Japan Company.

  • Spatial Epidemiology of Mycetoma in Sudan project

Still there a massive knowledge in mycetoma epidemiology, disease distribution, and its incidence and prevalence. Presently MRC is conducting a collaborative research project with Brighton and Sussex Medical School, UK (BSMS) supported by the National Institute of Health Research, UK. The project is targeting three mycetoma endemic states; Gaziera, Sennar and White Nile states. They were selected due to their high endemicity based on the MRC records. The study objectives are to determine the prevalence of mycetoma in Sudan, determine the role of environmental risk factors in the disease occurrence, population at risk and the socioeconomic impact of the disease in the affected population. The project duration is three years.

  • Mycetoma diagnosis and pathogenesis project

Mycetoma is a unique neglected tropical disease caused by a substantial number of microorganisms of fungal or bacterial origins. Identification of the causative organism and the disease extension are the first steps in the management of the affected patients and for predicting disease treatment outcome and prognosis. This project is a joint PhD programme between the Mycetoma Research Center and Erasmus Medical Center, Department of Medical Microbiology and Infectious Disease. The project aims to validate the M. mycetomatis specific PCR in a daily clinical setting, and identification and characterisation of the second most common causative agents in Sudan, the development of a multiplex specific PCR for the most common causative agents of mycetoma in Sudan. Moreover, designing and validation of M. mycetomatis specific real-time PCR directly on grains to ensure rapid identification and reduction in diagnosis time.

  • Metagenomic analysis of environmental samples from mycetoma endemic areas in Sudan project

Mycetoma is a distinctive neglected tropical disease caused by a   significant number of microorganisms of fungal or bacterial origins. However, currently, the route of infection in mycetoma is unclear. The project aims to study the soil-borne or thorn-prick-mediated theory of infection in this infection as well as the environmental factors roles in the disease transmission.

  • Arthropod vector in eumycetoma transmission in the endemic area project.

The present project aims to determine the possible role of arthropod vectors in the transmission of eumycetoma in an endemic area in the poor savanna belt in Eastern Sennar locality, Sennar State, Sudan.

  • Protein biobank project

The project aims to establish a Protein Biobank at the MRC in collaboration with the Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, University of Khartoum. The material will be available for future protein identification and rapid mycetoma test design.

  • The MRC Biobank Project

The MRC is establishing a biobank for the available biological material at the Centre. The material includes culture isolates, tissues, grains, sera, blood, and tissue blocks. With this system, this material will be handy and available for future research and collaboration with other research institutes and centres.

  • Development of a novel rapid, sensitive and affordable point of care diagnostic test for eumycetoma project.

This project is sponsored by the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research in collaboration with the Institute of Endemic Diseases, University of Khartoum and EL Azhari University. Its main objective is to design a point of care diagnostic test for mycetoma.

  • The Immunopathology project.

This project aims to study in depth the immunopathology of mycetoma, and that is in collaboration with the Infection and Inflammation Centre, York University, UK.

  • The Mycetoma Genetic project

In collaboration with Brighton and Sussex Medical School, UK (BSMS) supported by the National Institute of Health Research the MRC is conducting a research project on the genetics of mycetoma. The project is examining the genetic background of mycetoma patients in certain endemic areas in Sudan, with the objective to bridge the knowledge gap in the susceptibility and resistance to mycetoma.

  • The Social impact of mycetoma

As a joint PhD programme between the MRC and Brighton and Sussex Medical School, UK (BSMS) supported by the National Institute of Health Research, UK an in-depth study on the various social impact of mycetoma on patients, families, community, and health system is currently conducted in Eastern Sennar, Sennar State.