Microbial Genomics, Pathogenesis & Resistance
AMR is increasingly becoming a major threat to our basic health care needs. As infections become increasingly resistant to current microbials and antibiotics, it reduces our ability to deliver infection free surgical and other necessary medical procedures. Our department is tackling this major global threat on many fronts. Dr Andrew Stewardson, is using a data driven approach to track AMR outbreaks across Victoria to try and develop a state-wide adopted system of reporting and controlling the spread of AMR infections.
Our research program focuses on the mechanisms of pathogenesis of important hospital-acquired pathogens. More specifically, Acinetobacter baumannii, an emerging gram-negative bacterium, Staphylococcus aureus, a gram-positive bacterium, and Candida albicans, the most common human fungal pathogen. We combine bacterial and fungal genetic techniques with exciting in vivo infection model systems (mammalian and non-mammalian [Caenorhabditis elegans and Zebrafish]) to characterise the role of novel genes in virulence and antimicrobial resistance. Our over-arching goal is to identify new targets that may be amenable for future drug development, with a focus on microbial virulence, persistence and adaptation.