Preventive interventions, such as chemo- or immunoprophylaxis have proven to be effective means of interruption of transmission for other diseases. Post-exposure chemoprophylaxis (PEP) for contacts of leprosy patients in programmes that can adequately identify and manage these contacts, was included in the 2018 WHO Guidelines on Treatment and Prevention of Leprosy. Immunoprophylaxis has only recently reached the phase of human trials. The LRI supports research on both topics, including contact management for PEP, pre- and post-exposure vaccines and combinations thereof. Studies on the role of genetic risk factors, non-human reservoirs of M. Leprae and the genetic epidemiology of the bacteria are also needed.
PEOPLE: Post ExpOsure Prophylaxis for LEprosy
Institute of Tropical Medicine (ITG), Belgium
This is a “cluster randomized” trial on effectiveness of different modalities of Single Double Dose of Rifampicin Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (SDDR-PEP) for leprosy in the Comoros (Anjouan and Mohéli) and Madagascar.
LepVax: Leprosy Vaccine Trail, Phase 1b
American Leprosy Missions (ALM)
LepVax, a defined subunit vaccine designed specifically for leprosy, has cleared safety evaluations in healthy volunteers in the United States. This proposal supports the onward clinical development of the LepVax by conducting a Phase 1b/2a randomized, placebo-controlled, clinical trial in Brazil.
Mozambique, Ehtiopia, Tanzania
The aim of the PEP4LEP study is to contribute to interrupting the transmission of M. leprae by identifying the most effective and feasible method of screening people at risk of developing leprosy and administering chemoprophylaxis in Ethiopia, Mozambique and Tanzania.
Molecular mechanisms controlling human susceptibility to leprosy
Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Paraná
In this project, the research group proposes to apply next-generation sequencing technology to sequence six genes consistently associated with host susceptibility to leprosy and leprosy reactions.