The centre’s diagnostic activities are accredited to ISO standards.
The principal diseases we advise on are Candida infections, including Candida vaginitis, chronic and invasive Aspergillus infections, Pneumocystis pneumonia, diseases caused by rare yeasts and moulds, and fungal infections of the skin, hair and nails. In addition, the Laboratory investigates issues relating to mould infested buildings and human health.
As with other microbial infections, the diagnosis of fungal infections depends on a combination of clinical observation and laboratory investigation. Fungal infections often produce symptoms that suggest a fungal diagnosis. In most situations where invasive fungal infection is a possible diagnosis, the clinical presentation is unclear and can be caused by a wide range of infections, underlying illness, or complications of treatment.
Tests and Treatment
Laboratory tests can help establish or confirm the diagnosis of a fungal infection, provide objective assessments of response to treatment, and monitor resolution of the infection. The successful laboratory diagnosis of fungal infection depends in major part on the collection of appropriate clinical specimens for investigation. It also depends on the selection of appropriate transport conditions and microbiological test procedures. These differ from disease to disease and depend on the site of infection as well as the presenting symptoms and clinical signs.
Interpretation of the results can sometimes be made with confidence, but at times the findings can be unhelpful or even misleading. It is in these situations that close liaison between the clinician and the laboratory is particularly important.
The reference laboratory is an integral part of the MFT National Aspergillosis Centre and provides a specialist medical mycology NHS service for the UK. We provide state-of-the art diagnostic test for patients of MFT, the Manchester Medical Microbiology Partnership, and to other hospitals and clinics throughout the UK. Antifungal and diagnostic advice can be offered on the diagnosis of disease, clinical management and care of patients.
Training and Research
As a member of the Manchester Fungal Diseases Group the MRCM acts as a focus for training and research in Medical Mycology in the UK, and is an integral part of the UK Clinical Mycology Network. Furthermore, the MRCM provides undergraduate (Manchester Medical School) and post-graduate level education (Masters in Medical Mycology, MD and PhD programmes) for the University of Manchester, the European Society for Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases, and for groups of clinicians from around the world.
The key aims and objectives of the MRCM are to provide and maintain:
- An exemplary specialist mycology service.
- National and local leadership in medical mycology diagnostic services.
- A national and international training centre for laboratory and medical staff.
- A service which is comprehensive, interpretative, accredited and appropriate to user needs.
- Education and training for all staff that is appropriate and relevant to the department goals and vision.
- Good working relationships within microbiology, pathology, and with other departments within the Trust, and colleagues in other hospitals and Universities throughout the UK.
The clinical Mycology Reference Centre, Manchester (MRCM) is based at MFT’s Wythenshawe Hospital on the second floor of the Education and Research Centre in modern, high quality building laboratory accommodation.
Who are we?
Director and Consultant Clinical Scientist
Professor Malcolm Richardson
Deputy Director and Senior Scientist
Dr Caroline Moore
Dr Riina Richardson
Infectious Disease Consultants
Dr Chris Kosmidis
For full information regarding our services see www.mrcm.org.uk