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On 4 June 2020, after a week of increasing scientific concern and scrutiny, first The Lancet, then the New England Journal of Medicine, retracted studies that were based on inaccessible data. The studies have been extremely damaging to chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine COVID-19 clinical trials around the globe. MORU researchers played a key role in bringing this scandal to light, whose consequences continue to play out.
Established in 1979 as a research collaboration between Thailand's Mahidol University and the UK's University of Oxford and Wellcome, the Mahidol Oxford Tropical Medicine Research Unit (MORU) and its Departments, laboratories and Operations & Admin are headquartered in Bangkok, Thailand within Mahidol's Faculty of Tropical Medicine.
Led by Prof Frank Smithuis, formerly of Médécins sans Frontières (MSF) and later of Medical Action Myanmar (MAM), the Myanmar Oxford Clinical Research Unit (MOCRU) was established in 2013.
Embedded within the Angkor Hospital for Children (AHC) in Siem Reap, Cambodia, the Cambodia-Oxford Medical Research Unit (COMRU) was established in 2006 as a collaboration between MORU and AHC, a non-profit paediatric teaching hospital and clinical training site for Cambodian doctors, nurses, medical students and health workers that provides free, quality healthcare to children. COMRU’s research focuses on the causes and reduction of morbidity and mortality in Cambodian children.
Located in Vientiane, the main objective of the Lao-Oxford-Mahosot Hospital-Wellcome Trust Research Unit (LOMWRU) is to conduct clinical research on diseases of public health importance, to contribute directly to health improvement in Laos and similar communities with little health information across Asia.
Founded in 1986 to work in camps for refugees from Myanmar, the Shoklo Malaria Research Unit (SMRU) provides quality health care to the marginalized populations living on both sides of the Thai-Myanmar border in the Mae Sot area, Tak Province. It does this by combining research and humanitarian services, with an emphasis on mother and child health and infectious diseases. In 2018 the Borderland Health Foundation was registered in Thailand as a legal structure attached to SMRU to further develop the non-research activities.