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Department of Clinical Research

Head of Department
Department Research Degree Co-ordinator
Department Research Degree Co-ordinator
Departmental Operating Officer

Tel: +44(0)20 7927 2256 Fax: +44(0)20 7927 2739

The Department of Clinical Research conducts research on diseases of public health importance in resource-constrained settings, with particular strengths in mycobacterial disease (tuberculosis and leprosy), malaria, sexually transmitted infections, HIV/AIDS, eye health and disability, and tropical and travel medicine. 

Our activities include:

  • trials of new therapies, vaccines and public health interventions
  • population and clinic-based epidemiological studies
  • development and evaluation of new diagnostic tests
  • studies investigating the immunological and molecular correlates of pathogenesis and protective immunity, and genetic polymorphisms conferring protection or susceptibility to infectious diseases
  • health services research which aims to identify the most efficient and cost-effective ways to deliver health care, interwoven with health policy analysis

Several members of staff practise clinical medicine at the Hospital for Tropical Diseases, in purpose-built accommodation within the University College Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, five minutes' walk from the School.

Our research is multidisciplinary, extending from basic laboratory science (immunology and molecular biology) through clinical medicine to epidemiology, public health and economics. We collaborate extensively in the UK and overseas, especially in Africa, but also in Asia and South America. We have staff based in The Gambia, Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, South Africa and India, and research degree students based in many other countries.

We have particular strengths in research on HIV and related infections. Work on the interactions between HIV and other sexually transmitted infections has focused particularly on HSV-2, and the effect of HSV treatment on HIV transmission, with studies in Ghana, Burkina Faso, Central African Republic, Uganda, Tanzania, Malawi and South Africa. We also conduct research on the control of Human papilloma virus (HPV) and cervical cancer in HIV-infected and non-infected populations in Africa.

Several staff research interactions between HIV infection and tuberculosis in Zambia, Malawi and South Africa, including trials of population-based tuberculosis case finding; novel strategies using isoniazid preventive therapy; and studies of new diagnostics.

Work in leprosy includes research into the pathogenesis and treatment of leprosy reactions, interaction with HIV, and investigation of new drugs, with studies in India, Nepal, Ethiopia and Brazil.

Eye health projects – ongoing in India, Nepal, Ethiopia, Nigeria and Brazil – include work on causes of blindness, retinopathy of prematurity, and the effect of services for children with impaired vision. Work on trachoma in The Gambia and Tanzania ranges from studies of pathogenesis to interventions to control this disease.

Publications by department staff can be viewed in the School’s online repository.  

Department staff & research students