Completed early detection projects
Early detection is important to reduce further transmission, but particularly because it reduces the risk of permanent impairments.
The LRI supports studies that examine approaches, methods or tools to improve early case detection. This includes health systems approaches to promote community awareness, appropriate health-seeking behaviour of patients and access to services, as well as the testing of lab-based tools for subclinical infection or disease. It may also include interventions to reduce community stigma, if this is a barrier to early detection in a given setting.
qPCR in household contact monitoring
Laboratório de Hanesíase Fundação Oswaldo Cruz/ FIOCRUZ (Brazil)
There are no diagnostic tests that could predict whether or not a “contact” will develop the disease. This project investigated the possible use of M.leprae DNA detection as a early detection method in over 1600 household contacts of leprosy patients. Results available
Novel immunodiagnostic tools
Erasmus MC, University Medical Center Rotterdam (Netherlands)
This study aimed to identify compounds of the immune system that are characteristic for the occurrence of leprosy and may differentiate between persons affected by leprosy, their contacts and healthy controls. Such compounds are called leprosy-specific biomarkers.
Earlier detection of leprosy
The Leprosy Mission Trust (India)
Many of the most important social and other factors that prevent people from being diagnosed early are still not well understood or implemented.This project has explored some of these factors and final results of this project are available.
Delays in diagnosis and treatment
International Nepal Fellowship
‘Delays’ are of critical importance in leprosy control work. The longer the delays, the greater the chance for a transmission of the disease to others and for lasting negative consequences upon the life of the individual: physically, socially, emotionally and economically.
Leprosy Field Research in Bangladesh
Examination of people in close contact with known leprosy cases is a very important way for identifying more new cases. The members of the same household and close neighbours are especially important because they are at greater risk of developing leprosy than the general population.