Department of Microbiology
Members: Dr. A. C. Ike – Department of Microbiology
Mr. K. O. Ugwu – Department of Microbiology/Enugu
State Ministry of Health Dr. G. C. Ngwu – Department of Zoology & Env. Biol.
Prof. B. C. Nwanguma Biochemistry
Dr. E. A. Eze – Microbiology
The delivery of cost effective health interventions for the control of common infectious diseases such as tuberculosis and malaria depends largely on generation of quality data and information for policy making and resource allocation. Many of the infectious diseases prevalent in Nigeria today are curable and preventable, but the development of drug resistance is a problem militating against the control of such infections.
The emergence and re-emergence of multi-drug resistant pathogens is a major public health problem world-wide, but especially in developing countries such as Nigeria. Diseases such as tuberculosis, which were previously believed to be under control in the western world, have in recent times re-emerged to become major public health concerns due to the emergence of multi-drug resistant strains of the causative organisms. This is also true for many other infectious diseases.
Studies have shown that one of the factors responsible for the rapid emergence of resistant strains in many parts of the world is the increasing rate of genetic mutations leading to evolution of many different clones of the organisms, which are subsequently disseminated. In addition to the development of resistant clones of pathogens, there is also increasing resistance of vectors to insecticides for vector-borne diseases like malaria. Therefore, surveillance for the resistant pathogens and vectors, investigation of the genetic relatedness of strains isolated from different environments and investigation of the mechanisms of acquisition and spread of resistance genes are of great importance in halting and reversing the increasing spread of drug-resistant pathogens.
The research efforts of the group are aimed at carrying out surveillance studies on some of the common infectious diseases, for which drug-resistance has been documented, studying the patterns of evolution and spread of the causative pathogens and evaluating alternative strategies for the management of drug-resistant infections.
1. Molecular epidemiology of multi-drug resistant tuberculosis in Enugu State.
2. Molecular evaluation of KDR mutation-associated insecticide resistance among anopheline vectors of malaria in south eastern Nigeria.
3. Assessment of the use of immobilized Lactobacillus cells in prevention of catheter biofilms.
4. Evaluation of some combination therapies for the possible treatment of drug-resistant infections.