There is need for reliable, simple and cost-effective diagnostic techology to detect and identify pathogens for effective medical treatment. Traditional methods typically are laborious, require high levels of expertise and usually focus on only one or a few organisms at once. I joined Prof Wellington's group to work on the development of a rapid, multiplexed method for the detection of pathogens in clinical and enivronmental samples as part of the EU-funded project FAPIC . We work together with nine other partners, including academics and industry, from seven countries to develop, optimise and validate novel high-troughput and automated methods to extract nucleic acids from complex samples. Combined with DNA-based molecular tools, including microarray technology, a large selection of important pathogen targets, but also emerging virulence and antimicrobial resistance genes will be detected from a range of samples. The technology will help inform e.g. clinicians veterinarians and other stakeholders on targeted treatment, saving time, cost and lives.
Bat Genotyping Service
We have recently started investigating bats in the UK through an ecological forensics service which ecologists can make use of to identify bat species on their surveys.