Drug Evaluation and Discovery Unit “DEDU”

  • Overview
  • Vision
  • Mission
  • Skills
  • Equipment and facilities
  • Projects
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The unit has been assigned by WHO/ African Network for Drugs and Diagnostics Innovation (ANDI) as Excellence Center on Anti-trematodal R&D

Research work on schistosomaisis has been running at the Pharmacology Department since 1980, the work on antitrematodal R&D work has been assigned an excellence work by WHO/ANDI, research staff possesses the necessary skills to conduct the work, where they cover diverse scientific backgrounds: Medicine, Pharmacy and Science.

Anti-trematodal R&D excellence center possesses the suitable infrastructure with essential facilities and access to biological material, including experimental animals and vector snail. The center is capable of conducting screens for antischistosomal/ and antitrematodal potential of natural and synthetic preparation involving, in vitro and in vivo experimentation coupled with bioavailability studies. Also, epidemiological field survey for assessment of antitrematodal potency. The unit is collaborating with > 20 research departments at TBRI availing complimentary research essential for drug evaluation.

Head of Excellence Center : Prof. Sanaa Botros
Professor of Pharmacology
Email: [email protected]

Evaluation of newly introduced compounds/drugs as well as achievement of lead compounds for the treatment of hepatogastrointestinal, kidney and neglected parasitic diseases specifically trematodal infections.


To achieve new lead health products specifically those addressing neglected parasitic diseases “diseases of the poor” out of native plants or plant/synthetic preparations.

Assessment of antischistosomal potential:

  • Primary screening using in vitro schistosome worm killing:
  • Assessment of product potency in vitro “LC50 estimation”
  •  In vivo evaluation of antischistosomal and antifascioliasis activities using parasitological criteria of cure.

To evaluate product activity:

  • In vitro scanning and transmission electron microscopy of product treated parasites.
  • In vitro and in vivo assay for essential parasite enzymes; cysteine proteinase, metalloproteinase and serine inhibition.

Field surveys for assessment of antischistosomal potency

  • Kato-Katz and bioavailability studies.
  • Haematobium Nucleopore test.

Other Research Skills

  • In vitro cytotoxicity assays on primary isolated hepatocytes and different cell lines (using MTT & SRB).
  • Pharmacokinetics, bioavailability and bioequivalence of compounds/drugs
  • Evaluation of hepatic drug metabolizing and antioxidant enzymes activities
  • Determination of hepatic metabolic function using antipyrine clearance (APC)
  • Estimation of Drug/herb-drug interactions using cytochrome-P450 isoforms.
Two laminar flows, two CO2 incubators, cooling centrifuge, peristaltic pumping machines, inverted and stereo microoscopes, two High Performance Liquid chromatography (HPLC) devices equipped with UV/DAD deterctors, electronic balances, water baths, microscopes, spectrophotometers, autoclave, cooling centrifuge, , liquid nitrogen container, sonicator, vertical deep freezers (-30°C), plethysmometer and hot cold plate.

External projects:

SIDA (2009 – 2012): Development of new compounds with effect on Schistosomiasis (bilharzia)”. PI: Prof. Sanaa Sabet Botros.

Project FP7 acronym, PDE4NPD (2014 – 2017): Parasite-specific cyclic nucleotide phosphodiesterase inhibitors to target Neglected Parasitic Diseases. PI: Prof. Sanaa Sabet Botros

Internal projects:

Assessment of the state of liver damage and hepatic metabolic function using antipyrine clearance in patients with different stages of chronic liver disease. Principal investigator: Prof. Sanaa Sabet Botros (2002)

Pharmacokinetic of drugs commonly used by patients with chronic liver disease. PI: Prof. Sanaa Sabet Botros (2009)

Possible antifibrotic effects of some natural and synthetic compounds against experimental hepatic fibrogenesis: in vitro and in vivo study. PI: Prof. Naglaa Mohamed El-Lakkany (2012)

Possible anti-inflammatory activity of certain natural products against hepatic inflammation in experimental animals and evaluation of their safety in hepatocyte cultures. PI: Prof. Sayed Hassan Seif el-Din (2013)

1. Mahmoud M, Abdel-Kader R, Hasan M, Saleh S, Botros SS (2007). Antipyrine clearance in comparison to conventional liver function tests in hepatitis C virus patients. Eur J Pharamacol, 569(3): 222-227.

2. El-Feky GS, Mohamed WS, Nasr HE, El-Lakkany NM, Seif el-Din SH, Botros SS (2015). Praziquantel in a clay nanoformulation shows more bioavailability and higher efficacy against murine Schistosoma mansoni infection. Antimicrob Agents Chemother, 59(6): 3501-3508.

3. El-Lakkany NM, Hendawy AS, Seif el-Din SH, Ashour AA, Atta R, Abdel-Aziz AH, Mansour AM, Botros SS (2016). Bioavailability of paracetamol with/without caffeine in Egyptian patients with hepatitis C virus. Eur J Clin pharmacol, 72(5):573-82.

4. Ezzat SM, Salama MM, Seif El-Din SH, Saleh S, El-Lakkany NM, Hammam OA, Salem MB, Botros SS (2016). Metabolic profile and hepatoprotective activity of the anthocyanin-rich extract of Hibiscus sabdariffa calyces. Pharm Biol, 54(12):3172-3181.

5. El-Lakkany NM, El-Maadawy WH, Seif El-Din SH, Hammam OA, Mohamed SH, Ezzat SM, Safar MM, Saleh S (2017). Rosmarinic acid attenuates hepatic fibrogenesis via suppression of hepatic stellate cell activation/proliferation and induction of apoptosis. Asian Pac J Trop Med., 10(5):444-453.

6. El-Lakkany NM, El-Maadawy WH, Seif el-Din SH, Saleh S, Safar MM, Shahira M. Ezzat SM, Mohamed SH, Botros SS, Demerdash Z, Hammam OA. Antifibrotic effects of gallic acid on hepatic stellate cells: in vitro and in vivo mechanistic study. J Tradit Complement Med, in press.

Theodor Bilharz Research Institute (TBRI)
Third floor of the Laboratories building
Tel.: (202) 35407276-35408277
Fax: (202)35408125

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