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Annual report 2008, Menzies School of Health Research



Annual report 2008, Menzies School of Health Research

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Menzies School of Health Research annual report 2008; 2008 Menzies School of Health annual report


Menzies School of Health Research


E-Publications; E-Books; PublicationNT; Menzies School of Health Research annual report; Annual Report






Through scientifi c excellence, education and research the team at Menzies is discovering ways to reduce the impact of disease and improve the health and well-being of people living in Australia and beyond. -- page 4


Made available via the Publications (Legal Deposit) Act 2004 (NT).; Charles Darwin University; Discovery for a healthy tomorrow

Table of contents

Who we are and what we do page 4 -- Where and how we work page 5 -- Menzies Strategic Plan page 6 -- Vision page 7 -- Values page 7 -- Goals page 7 -- The Year at a Glance page 8 -- Financial and Corporate Overview page 12 -- A Message from the Chair page 14 -- A Message from the Director page 16 -- A Message from the Indigenous Development Unit page 18 -- Child Health Division page 21 -- Healing and Resilience Division page 27 -- International Health Division page 33 -- Preventable Chronic Diseases Division page 39 -- Services, Systems and Society Division Page 45 -- Tropical and Emerging Infectious Diseases Division page 51 -- Education and Training Division page 57 -- Corporate Services Division page 63 -- Menzies and the Community page 71 -- Governance page 72 -- Honorary Appointees page 75 -- Research Funding page 76 -- Publications page 84 -- Professional Activities page 92 -- Collaborators page 96 -- page 3




Menzies School of Health Research; Medicine; Research; Annual report

Publisher name

Menzies School of Health Research

Place of publication



Menzies School of Health Research annual report; Annual Report




99 pages : colour illustration ; 30 cm.

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Copyright owner

Menzies School of Health Research



Related links

https://www.menzies.edu.au/ [Menzie School of Health Research website]

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Page content

Antibiotic Resistance lactamase mediated antibiotic resistance in Gram-negative pathogens : How does genotype relate to phenotype? Genetic structures that support copy number plasticity of plasmid-borne blaSHV genes in Klebsiella pneumoniae. Skin Pathogens An Immunodiagnostic Assay for Scabies. Australian Leishmania lifecycle investigation. Characterising the biological role of Sarcoptes scabiei aspartic proteases. Community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus: epidemiology, emergence and treatment. Mechanisms of scabicide resistance. Mathematical modeling of streptococcal disease. Molecular mechanisms of ivermectin resistance in the ectoparasitic mite, Sarcoptes scabiei. Arrival of Assoc Professor Phil Giffard as the Head of Laboratory Science bringing with him two PhD students and signifi cant expertise in the fi eld of antibiotic resistance. Development of a new high resolution melt-based method for the genetic fi ngerprinting of bacteria. This has been proven particularly successful and applied to a range of bacterial pathogens including Staphylococcus aureus (golden staph) and group A streptococcus. The determination of a unique evolutionary pathway for the newly discovered Staphylococcus lineage CC75 that is prevalent in the Top End of the Northern Territory. Rapid diagnostic tests developed for the highly virulent Staphylococcus clone ST93 as well as for two genetic polymorphisms that modulate drug resistance in enteric bacteria. Publication of research describing a growing problem with community-associated Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in Aboriginal communities across northern Australia. Researchers believe the growing epidemic is particularly related to continuing poor skin health and poor quality and overcrowded housing. A new genetic structure has been developed that supports the rapid amplifi cation of gene copy number in bacteria. This can have a great effect on antibiotic resistance if the amplifi ed gene is a resistance gene. Using known scabies patients and uninfested controls it has been shown that a cocktail of scabies proteins can very specifi cally and sensitively detect antibodies to scabies mite proteins in scabies infested people. In collaboration with the Burnett Institute in Melbourne we have been investigating the adaption of this laboratory method into a rapid test strip format. It is hoped that this test will be adapted into a rapid and robust strip style test and we plan to validate the test in a community setting over the next two years. Divisional researchers have conducted experiments in scabies mites with a range of drug tolerances to determine the activity levels of key enzymes thought to be involved in the drug resistance process. They have identifi ed a single nucleotide polymorphism in the knockdown resistance gene in drug resistant scabies mites and have developed a rapid and robust test to screen mites for this mutation using high resolution melt technology. Australian Leishmania lifecycle investigations continued with ongoing phlebotomine sand fl y trapping in the Darwin region and Leishmania screening of biting midges. The team diagnosed cutaneous leishmaniasis in black wallaroo and agile wallabies and continued surveillance for Leishmania in common native mammals from the Darwin rural area. The Melioidosis team developed and published a novel molecular typing technique called MLVA-4. This test will be used to help rule out within 24 hours that a melioidosis outbreak is occurring in the community. Development of environmental prediction maps for the presence of B. pseudomallei for the Rural Darwin region. Further expansion of the Menzies Burkholderia pseudomallei strain collection and development of new insights into the origins of melioidosis and its links to the ancient Australian continent. Highlights of 2008 53Tropical and Emerging Infectious Diseases Division

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