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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.

© 2019 MORU

Research at COMRU is focused around the important causes of morbidity and mortality in Cambodian children. Despite recently graduating to lower middle-income status, Cambodia remains one of the poorest nations in Southeast Asia with high rates of neonatal, infant and childhood mortality.

Reflecting the unit’s major research focus on bacterial infection and antimicrobial resistance (AMR), COMRU has a well-equipped diagnostic and research microbiology laboratory onsite at AHC, including facilities for bacterial culture, molecular pathogen identification/characterisation by PCR and whole genome sequencing (WGS), and serological testing. It also carries out research in the community of Siem Reap Province, particularly in the large, rural and very poor district of Sotnikum and the nearby province of Preah Vihear


Our team

COMRU Research Highlights

Antimicrobial-resistant Gram-negative colonization in infants from a neonatal intensive care unit in Thailand

Posted 31/05/2019. Drug-resistant infections caused by Enterobacteriaceae, a family of Gram-negative bacteria, account for a high and increasing disease burden amongst hospitalised neonates in Southeast Asia; carbapenem-resistant strains are particularly important because of limited antibiotic treatment options. Tamalee Roberts and colleagues found that nearly two thirds of infants in a neonatal unit in Thailand became asymptomatic carriers with carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae during their hospital stays. This work indicates a critical need for interventions to reduce this usually hidden reservoir of drug-resistant bacteria.

Microbiology Investigation Criteria for Reporting Objectively (MICRO): a framework for the reporting and interpretation of clinical microbiology data

Posted 07/05/2019. Developed by Paul Turner and fellow members of the Oxford Tropical Network, the MICRO framework provides the scientific community with clear guidance on reporting and interpretation of clinical microbiology and antimicrobial resistance (AMR) data. Use of the framework will result in publication of better quality data for use in the global fight against AMR. The MICRO guideline is also posted on the EQUATOR website