The gram-negative pathogen Yersinia pestis is the causative agent of plague, a disease that has caused millions of deaths in three world pandemics. Plague still persists in Africa, Asia and the Americas and it is categorized as a re-emerging disease. The most prevalent form of the disease in nature is bubonic plague, which develops following transmission of the pathogen from rodent reservoirs to humans via infected fleas.
Bacillus anthracis, the ethological cause of Anthrax, is a spore- forming gram positive bacteria. Our group has mastered multiple clinical and laboratory microbiology techniques, from classical isolation and plating and selective growth in complicated media, to light microscopy, confocal and scanning (SEM) or transmission electron microscopy (TEM).
Francisella tularensis, the causative agent of tularemia, is a gram-negative facultative intracellular bacterium that can cause a life-threatening infection in humans. Depending on the site of infection, tularemia has several characteristic clinical variants. Of these, the respiratory route of infection is the most severe, causing a deadly disease upon exposure to a very low inhalation dose (as few as 1–10 bacteria).
Development of advanced laboratory techniques and tools for the isolation and propagation of various pathogenic viruses.Clinical and environmental diagnosis of viruses – isolation and identification using advanced techniques such as Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM), genetic and immune-based diagnosis.
Botulinum neutotoxins (BoNTs) are produced by the anaerobic bacterium Clostridium botulinum and are the most poisonous substances known in nature. Following entry into the circulation, BoNTs block neuro-transmission across neuromuscular junctions leading to systemic flaccid paralysis that may lead to respiratory failure and death.
Ricin and abrin are potent plant-derived lethal toxins that halt protein synthesis in cells. Pulmonary or systemic exposure to these toxins induces ARDS (acute respiratory stress syndrome) and multi-organ failure, respectively, leading inevitably to death.
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