The ILULU Partnership
The EU collaboration to develop a novel diagnostic marker for tuberculosis has developed from a longstanding collaboration between Imperial College and Red Cross Children's Hospital at the University of Cape Town. The Borrows Wellcome/Wellcome Trust Infectious Disease Initiative programme grant was awarded jointly to Imperial College, Universityof Cape Town, and Stanford University in 2000 to study the molecular and genetic basis of childhood tuberculosis. This collaboration linking the Department of Paediatrics at Imperial College (Professor Mike Levin) and Red Cross Children's Hospital (Professor Brian Eley and Professor David Beatty) supported the development of a programme of work applying molecular and genetic methods to the study of tuberculosis in Cape Town. The collaborative research programme was strengthened by the award of a Wellcome Trust Senior Fellowship to Professor Robert Wilkinson, further strengthening the links between Imperial College and University of Cape Town. Pilot data on the application of proteomic and gene expression profiling methods to diagnose childhood tuberculosis was obtained during the conduct of this programme of research, which formed the basis of the current EU proposal.