Infectious Diseases & Microbiology
The Infectious Diseases & Microbiology Group, is led by Professor Derrick Crook, Professor Tim Peto and Professor Sarah Walker.
The Infectious Diseases & Microbiology Group, is led by Professor Derrick Crook, Professor Tim Peto, Professor Sarah Walker and Dr Daniel Wilson who are largely focussed on translating new molecular technologies and advances in informatics into the investigation of microbial transmission, diagnosis of infectious disease and identifying novel outbreaks of communicable disease. The research is undertaken through a joint programme of work funded by the Oxford BRC Infection Theme and the Modernising Medical Microbiology UK Clinical Research Consortium (UK-CRC), which consists of the Health Protection Agency (HPA), Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and the University of Oxford combined with the ORH NHS Trust. The aims and objectives of this research is to translate deep sequencing of pathogens on an epidemiological scale for tracking hospital and locally acquired infections and it is focussed on four different major pathogens; Staphylococcus aureus (including MRSA), Clostridium difficile, Norovirus and Mycobacterium tuberculosis. A database linkage project that facilitates investigations of patterns of infectious disease among patients using the Oxford Hospitals and GPs, is being carried out in tangent for the first three pathogens. Overall this joint programme of work is nationally leading the way and is likely to radically transform the practice of microbiology and infectious disease as well as microbial research in the coming years.
Other research currently being carried out within this group covers respiratory and gastrointestinal infections and diagnostics, Haemophilus genomics and capsular switch vaccine escape in Pneumococcus. The group has members at multiple sites within Oxford, drawing in from the following disciplines of microbiology, epidemiology, population genetics, statistics, bioinformatics, genomics and informatics, namely within the Experimental Medicine Division, Nuffield Department of Clinical Medicine at the John Radcliffe Hospital and the Statistics Experimental Laboratory at the Oxford Gene Centre for Function, as well as the Gene Centre at the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics and The Bone infection Unit based in the NOC (Nuffield Orthopaedic Hospital).
Key projects the group are involved in include Antibiotic Review Kit (ARK), Comprehensive Resistance Prediction for Tuberculosis: an International Consortium (CRyPTIC) and SusTainability of Effective interventions to promote Prudent antibiotic Use in Primary care (STEP-UP).