Daten zum Projekt

Phase change material to treat Buruli ulcer through heat treatment (Pilotstudie)

Initiative: Wissen für morgen – Kooperative Forschungsvorhaben im subsaharischen Afrika
Ausschreibung: Tropical Medicine 2004
Bewilligung: 11.07.2005
Laufzeit: 1 Jahr


Buruli ulcer, caused by Mycobacterium ulcerans, is a devastating mycobacterial disease, mainly of children under the age of 15 years with the main focus in West Africa. Treatment options for Buruli ulcer available today are unsatisfactory with wide surgical excision and skin grafting as the standard treatment over the past decades. Recurrence rates of surgical treatment are unacceptably high. Antibiotics have been repeatedly evaluated with widely varying results. Recently Rifampicin/Streptomycin are again on trial focusing on their efficacy as primary and as adjunctive treatment combined with surgery. Since M. ulcerans is thermosensitive, prolonged heat application represents an attractive treatment option to destroy the majority of the bacteria. Heat application devices experimentally employed in the 70ies yielded very promising results, but were completely impractical in the field. Phase change materials (PCM) offer the unique perspective to put heat treatment into practice through their thermal energy storing capacity. In this pilot study, a randomized controlled trial of heat treatment (PCM - bandage) vs antibiotic treatment (8 weeks Streptomycin/ Rifampicin [= 8w Sm/Rif]) in patients with M. ulcerans ulcers in Ghana and Cameroon will be performed to test the efficacy of the new heat treatment device.


  • PD Dr. Thomas Junghanss

    Universität Heidelberg
    Abteilung für Tropenhygiene und Öffentliches
    Sektion Klinische Tropenmedizin

  • Dr. Ernestina Mensah-Quainoo

    District Health Directorate
    Buruli Ulcer Unit

  • Dr. Alphonse Um Boock

    Bureau Regional pour l'Afrique
    Kamerun (Cameroun)

  • Prof. Dr. Gerd Pluschke

    Swiss Tropical and Public Health
    Institute TPH
    Molecular Immunology Unit

  • Dr. Helmut Weinläder

    Bayerisches Zentrum für Angewandte
    Energieforschung e.V.
    Abteilung Würzburg
    Abteilung Wärmedämmung und Wärmetransport
    AG Solare und Optische Systeme

  • Dr. Dorothy Yeboah-Manu

    University of Ghana
    Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research