New Clinical and Research Laboratories part-funded by the UK’s Wellcome Trust were officially opened by Prince Andrew, the Duke of York, at the National Hospital of Tropical Diseases (NHTD) in Hanoi, Vietnam this week.

The new laboratories will provide state-of-the-art diagnostic and research capabilities to improve the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of major infectious diseases such as pneumonia and Dengue fever, which continue to “exert a heavy toll” in Vietnam and elsewhere, the Trust noted.

The facilities are the latest fruit of a partnership between the Wellcome Trust, the NHTD and the Oxford University Clinical Research Unit (OUCRU) in Vietnam, building on the Wellcome Trust Major Overseas Programme that was established in the country in 1991. The NHTD-OUCRU Laboratories are jointly funded by the Trust, the Li Ka Shing Foundation and the South-East Asia Infectious Disease Clinical Research Network.

“These new facilities have provided an important opportunity to build research capacity within Vietnam so that Vietnamese and international researchers working on Vietnamese priorities can conduct research in an internationally competitive environment,” commented Peter Horby, director of OUCRU-Hanoi.