The Parasitic Disease Unit of the Department of Parasitology was formerly known as the Malaria Research Unit (MRU) (1988-2016). With the Department of Parasitology giving wider attention to all parasitic diseases of public health importance the name change took place in 2016.
Number of research projects are carried out at the Parasitic Diseases Research Unit (PDRU) contributing to the research and development activities in Sri Lanka. The PDRU also provides diagnostic services for various parasitic diseases.
The permanent staff members attached to the Department of Parasitology actively involved in the activities of the PDRU. In addition there are research assistants who are carrying out various research projects at the PDRU.
Research and diagnostic activities of the PDRU are mainly carried out for the following parasitic diseases and fields:
- Helminthology including filariasis
- Vector and entomological studies
More than 150 originals scientific papers have been published in international peer-reviewed journals.
More than 200 abstracts have been published in national and international scientific conference proceedings.
Research studies conducted at the Malaria Research Unit paved the way for 32 post-graduate research degree (28 PhDs and 4 M. Phils) awarded by the University of Colombo. These graduates are currently working in various capacities, both locally and overseas, as Regional Malaria Officers of the National Anti-Malaria Campaign, as senior government administrative officials and consultants of international agencies.