Buruli ulcer

Sterilizing activity of fully oral intermittent regimens against Mycobacterium ulcerans infection in mice

PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases

Publication details

Editors: A. Chauffour, J. Robert, N. Veziris, A. Aubry and V. Jarlier
Number of pages: 10 p.
Publication date: October 2016
Languages: English
WHO reference number:



Buruli ulcer, caused by Mycobacterium ulcerans, is the third most frequent disease due to a bacteria of the mycobacteria family, after tuberculosis and leprosy. The disease consists of a cutaneous infection leading to skin ulcerations that can cause severe and debilitating scars. It occurs mostly in Africa where access to healthcare is still difficult.

Until recently, surgery was the only way to treat Buruli ulcer. Recently, a medical treatment based on two antibiotics (rifampin and streptomycin) was found to be active in an experimental infection model and was recommended by WHO in 2004 for humans. A drawback of this new medical approach is a long and daily administration (2 months) of streptomycin, an aminoglycoside, which requires daily injections and can have secondary effects.

In our research, we sought to find a fully oral and intermittent treatment to facilitate the management of the patients on the field. The antibiotics combinations we studied were efficient in our model and would need now to be tested on the field.

Related links