“Science will be essential to reach all goals of the new 2030 agenda”

Message from the Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, referring to the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

On UNESCO’s World Science Day for Peace and Development, we celebrate the work of our Blue Peter Public Health and Research Centre (BPHRC) in Hyderabad, India.

The Blue Peter Bring and Buy Sale in 1996 was the most successful of the TV programme’s appeals.  The final total was an amazing £2,800,000 (that’s nearly five million pounds in today’s terms!).

Part of these funds was used to establish the centre where the main focus is to improve the lives of people affected by leprosy, lymphatic filariasis and tuberculosis (TB)

With four departments:  clinical and epidemiology; microbiology,; immunology and molecular biology and field projects, the research centre conducts applied research and has published many papers in international journals.

In immunology the staff are investigating human immune mechanisms to understand how infectious diseases such as leprosy and TB develop, as well as the role of genes in immune responses. The insights may help in planning improved or new strategies to prevent and control these diseases, perhaps including vaccines.

The clinical division undertakes the DOTS (directly observed treatment, short course) for tuberculosis, developing an excellent database and recording follow-up visits. 

Our microbiology laboratory provides rapid and simple diagnosis of multidrug-resistant (MDR) TB and is the referral centre for patients from the States of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.

Collaboration with national institutes, local universities and international universities is a major activity. In the field of tuberculosis, BPHRC is a part of the Centre of Excellence in collaboration with ten other investigators from six national institutes and Hyderabad Central University. The senior staff of BPHRC are engaged in international and national academic networks.

We also offer a wide range of training programmes for undergraduates, postgraduates and postdoctoral researchers to develop knowledge and skills, with state-of-the-art equipment and well-equipped laboratories.