Within our division, we are dedicated to researching Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs), focusing particularly on Visceral Leishmaniasis (VL), the most severe form of this disease. Our mandate is to advance understanding, develop effective interventions, and contribute to global efforts to combat NTDs, addressing significant health challenges in vulnerable populations.


Visceral Leishmaniasis (VL)

There are three main forms of Leishmaniases: Visceral Leishmaniasis (also known as Kala-azar and the most serious form of the disease), Cutaneous Leishmaniasis (the most common), and Mucocutaneous Leishmaniasis. The disease is caused by the protozoan Leishmania parasites which are transmitted by the bite of infected female phlebotomine sandflies. VL is the most serious of the three forms and it is fatal if left untreated in over 95 percent of cases. It is characterized by irregular bouts of fever, weight loss, enlargement of the spleen and liver, and anaemia. Most cases occur in Brazil, East Africa and inSouth-East Asia. An estimated 50,000 to 90,000 new cases of VL occur worldwide each year out of which only an estimated 25–45 percent are reported to WHO. In 2017, more than 95 percent of new cases reported to WHO occurred in 10 countries: Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Ethiopia, India, Kenya, Nepal, Somalia, South Sudan and Sudan.  In 2017, 20,792 out of 22,145 (94percent) new cases of VL reported to WHO occurred in seven countries: Brazil, Ethiopia, India, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan and Sudan

Several studies are ongoing in the division as follows:

Clinical Trial

An Open Label, Phase III, Randomized Controlled, Multicentre Non-Inferiority Trial to Compare Efficacy and Safety of Miltefosine and Paromomycin with Sodium Stibogluconate and Paromomycin Combination for Treatment of Primary Visceral Leishmaniasis (VL) Patients in Eastern Africa

Diagnostic study

Evaluation of antibody detection tests for visceral leishmaniasis diagnosis in Eastern Africa.

Immunological Study

A observational multicentre study to assess immune response status in patients before and after treatment for visceral

Dr. Jane Mbui

Dr. Simon Njenga

Dr, Margaret Mbuchi

Mr. Kirigi George