Control of Infectious Diseases
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Pathogen diversity, host specificity and virulence

This theme aims to understand how pathogens infect their hosts and cause disease, as well as why some differ in virulence or in the range of hosts they can infect.

Such studies will improve our ability to predict the risk they pose, and lead to new strategies to detect, treat and prevent infection. In addition to identifying candidate antigens for novel vaccines and adjuvants, this strand of research will evaluate alternatives to antibiotics.

Research Highlights

Examples of previous and current work in this area:

Predicting the potential of E. coli transmission from cattle to humans

Computers learn to recognise strains of E. coli present in cattle that are a threat to human health.

Novel therapeutics against viral diseases

Scientists show that a chemical inhibitor of a cell factor (VCP) is a potent antiviral.

Role for migratory birds in the global spread of influenza

Infection route from virus sequence data
Monitoring the migration routes of wild birds could help to provide early warning of potential bird flu outbreaks.

Understanding host jumps by Staphylococcus aureus

A cow has its mouth examined
Bacteria may be able to jump between species with greater ease than was previously thought.