VALIDATE currently focuses on four pathogens that cause diseases that have significant impact on low and middle-income countries: Mycobacterium tuberculosis (causing TB), leishmanias (leishmaniasis), Burkholderia pseudomallei (melioidosis), and Mycobacterium leprae (leprosy).

Find out more about these diseases and our research on the pathogens that cause them:


Tuberculosis (TB) is a disease caused by a bacterium, Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M.tb), and is found worldwide. In 2019 10 million people developed TB and 1.4 million died, making TB the greatest global infectious disease cause of death, killing more people every year than HIV or malaria.

You can find more information about the disease on our Tuberculosis Page.



Leishmaniasis refers to a diverse group of diseases, all caused by single-celled parasites called Leishmania. Over one billion people are at risk of leishmaniasis, with ~12 million people infected at any one time, causing 20,000-40,000 deaths annually. The disease is recognized by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as a major neglected disease of poverty that disproportionately affects populations in low and middle-income countries.

There is more extensive information about this pathogen on our Leishmaniasis page.

burkholderia pseudomallei


Melioidosis is a disease caused by a bacterium, Burkholderia pseudomallei, and is found across tropical and semi-tropical regions worldwide. It is estimated that 165,000 people develop melioidosis annually with 89,000 of these cases being fatal, making melioidosis a global health concern.

For more information on the Melioidosis and how VALIDATE Researchers are tackling it, vist our Meliodosis page.

mycobacterium leprae


Leprosy (also known as Hansen’s Disease) is a chronic neglected tropical disease associated with poverty. It is caused by the bacterium Mycobacterium leprae. Leprosy symptoms can take 20 years or more to occur. Leprosy infection damages the peripheral nerves in the skin’s surface, and can cause blindness and limb disfiguration and loss. There are ~200,000 new cases per year.

You can find full details about the disease and our work to tackle it on our Leprosy page.