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Bacterial and Viral Diseases Research Directorate

Background

The Bacterial and Viral Diseases Research Directorate (BVDRD) is one of the research directorates and has research teams: Bacterial and Fungal Diseases Research team and Viral Diseases Research team.

 

The main objectives of the Directorate is to undertake research activities in the areas mentioned below and contribute in medical research capacity building through supporting Msc and PhD students.

Current research areas:

  • Understanding aetiology and Molecular Epidemiology of Infectious Diseases
  • Antimicrobial Resistance
  • Assessing vaccine efficacy
  • Development of in-house PCR assays
  • Training

 

BVDRD has two case teams:

  • Bacterial & Fungal diseases Research
  • Viral diseases Research

Major Area of the Research

  • Clinical Genomics and Diagnostics
  • Antimicrobial resistance
  • Polymicrobial infections
  • Emerging infectious diseases
  • Host-pathogen interactions

Current Projects/Studies/Activities

Aetiology of Acute Meningitis and Production of Trans-Isolate media

A research project on surveillance and serogroup distribution of meningococcal meningitis among vaccinated and non-vaccinated Ethiopians is going to be initiated soon at AHRI. Around nine study sites will be enrolled so as to make the study in a wider scope than the previous study which showed the emerging of new serogroup (X) of N. meningitidis. It is expected that more numbers of serogroup X and W135 N. meningitidis will be detected through the wider scope study.

Bacterial Viral Diseases Research Directorate (BVDRD) has currently initiated production of trans-isolate media (TIM) supporting survival and live transportation of frequent bacterial meningitis etiologic agents such as N. meningitidis, S. pneumoniae and H. influenzae which are otherwise fastidious pathogens. Different batches of the media are all proved successful for viability and sterility tests carried out each time they are produced. Use of TIM is essential for successful culture diagnosis of bacterial meningitis especially when cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) samples need to be transported to other lab where culture diagnostic facility is located far from sample collection site or when more than one hour is needed for culture detection. Hence the directorate is working on large scale production of the media to assist culture diagnosis of the bacterial pathogens causing meningitis.

 

Severe Typhoid in Africa (SETA)

SETA is a consortium project funded by IVI (International Vaccine Institute) through the BMGF (Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation) which aims to implement a blood culture (BC) based surveillance program that will allow for the collection of the information for disease burden, severity, cost of illness and immune response through a comprehensive & integrated sentinel surveillance design in six African countries (Ghana, Ethiopia, Burkina Faso, Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar). In this program, we employed a combination of passive facility based sentinel surveillance activities for febrile diseases at tertiary, secondary, and primary healthcare facilities where clinical and microbiological data prospectively collected from suspected typhoid and non-typhoidal salmonellosis taking into consideration the Typhoid Surveillance in Africa Program (TSAP) platform and data that was collected between 2012-2014 and data.

Viral Hepatitis

Chronic viral hepatitis is a major public health issue worldwide and mostly affects resource-limited countries. In collaboration with Federal Ministry of Health and five Universities (Addis Ababa, Gonadar, Hawassa, Haromaya and Jimma University), we are working on determining a rough estimate of viral hepatitis (HBV/HCV/HDV/HEV) and assessing the presence of regional difference in the magnitude of viral hepatitis among mothers and their children of 5-9 years old. Moreover, we are working on determining the serological and clinical efficacy of currently available HBV vaccines and estimating the burden of vertical transmission of HBV in Ethiopia at all five sites.

Antimicrobial Resistance

Antimicrobial resistance is an increasingly serious threat to global public health that requires action across all government sectors and society. It occurs naturally over time, usually through genetic changes, however, misuse and overuse of antimicrobials is accelerating this process and also. We are carrying out different studies to understand the magnitude of antimicrobial resistance and distribution of resistant genes in some bacterial species including S. aureus, S. pneumonia, E. coli, K. pneumonia, N. Meningitides and others.

Assessing vaccine efficacy

Vaccines offer the most cost-effective approach to controlling infectious diseases and Ethiopia has been engaged in expanding immunization services. However, very little is known about the efficacy of vaccines given to children. We are conducting different researches to know the efficacy of vaccines against pneumococcus, HBV, rota, and measles.

Development of in-house PCR assays

The cost of imported commercial kits is usually quite high and not affordable in resource-limited countries. As such, development and evaluation of a simple and cost-effective in-house PCR assay which is suitable for resource-poor settings is crucial. Currently we are working on developing in-house assays to test HIV drug resistance, HBV and HPV genotype.

Achievements

  • One policy brief on meningitis prepared and submitted to MoH
  • Two EMJ special supplementary issues are under preparation from MoH funded clinical research on Hepatitis and Antimicrobial Research

Recent Publication

  • Cooper LV, Boukary RM, Aseffa A, Mihret W, Collard JM, Daugla D, Hodgson A, Sokhna C, Omotara B, Sow S, Quaye SL, Diallo K, Manigart O, Maiden MCJ, Findlow H, Borrow R, Stuart JM, Greenwood BM, Trotter CLInvestigation of correlates of protection against pharyngeal carriage of Neisseria meningitidis genogroups W and Y in the African meningitis belt. PLoS One. 2017;12(8):e0182575
  • Adal M, Howe R, Kassa D, Aseffa A, Petros B.  Malnutrition and lipid abnormalities in antiretroviral naïve HIV-infected adults in Addis Ababa: A cross-sectional study. PLoS One. 2018; 13(4):e0195942.
  • Bitew Kifilie A, Dagnew M, Tegenie B, Yeshitela B, Howe R, Abate E. Bacterial Profile, Antibacterial Resistance Pattern, and Associated Factors from Women Attending Postnatal Health Service at University of Gondar Teaching Hospital, Northwest Ethiopia. Int J Microbiol. 2018;2018:3165391
  • G/Eyesus T, Moges, F., Eshetie, S., Yeshitela, B., & Abate, E. (2017). Bacterial etiologic agents causing neonatal sepsis and associated risk factors in Gondar, Northwest Ethiopia. BMC pediatrics17(1), 137.
  • Sharew B, Mulu A, Teka B, Tesfaye T HIV-Sero-prevalence trend among blood donors in North East Ethiopia. Afr Health Sci. 2017 Sep;17(3):712-718
  • Mulu A, Maier M, Liebert UG.  Upward trends of acquired drug resistances in Ethiopian HIV-1C isolates: A decade longitudinal study. . PLoS One. 2017 Oct 19
  • Mekonnen D, Derbie A, Biadglegne F, Adem Y, Zenebe Y, Mekonnen H, Gebeyaw A, Shumet A, Bereded F, Hailu D, Elfu B, Mihret A, Sack U. Knowledge and practice on magnitude, diagnosis, treatment and prevention strategies of Hepatocellular Carcinoma in Ethiopia: A Systematic Review. J. Health Dev. 2017;31(1):44-56
  • Mihret W, Sletbakk Brusletto B, Øvstebø R, Siebke Troseid AM, Norheim G, Merid Y, Kassu A, Abebe W, Ayele S, Silamsaw Asres M, Yamuah L, Aseffa A, Petros B, Caugant DA, Brandtzaeg P Molecular studies of meningococcal and pneumococcal meningitis patients in Ethiopia. Innate Immun. 2019 Apr;25(3):158-167
  • Abraham Aseffa, Ebba Abate, Berhanu Seyoum, Tesfaye Kassa, Tamrat Abebe, Anteneh Amsalu, Abebaw Bitew, Tsegaye Alemayehu, Zeleke Ayenew, Zeleke Gizachew, Daniel Demissie, Sebsib Neway, Biruk Yeshitela, Andargachew Mulu, Adane Mihret, Taye Tolera Balcha, Rawleigh Howe. Investigations on Antimicrobial Resistance: Contributions of a Clinical Research Network. EMJ 2019 ; Supplement 1: 3
  • Abebaw Bitew, Birhanemeskel Tegene, Biruk Yeshitila, Rawleigh Howe, Ebba Abate, Mulat Dagnew. Bacterial Profile, Antibacterial Susceptibility Pattern and Associated Factors among Women Attending Antenatal and Postnatal Health Services at the University of Gondar Teaching Hospital, Northwest Ethiopia. EMJ 2019 ; Supplement 1: 9-22
  • Daniel Demissie, Berhanu Seyoum, Melake Demena, Biruk Yeshitila. Septicemia, Bacterial Isolates and Drug Susceptibility among Women Attending Delivery at Dilchora Hospital, Dire Dawa, Eastern Ethiopia. EMJ 2019 ; Supplement 1: 23
  •  Zeleke Gizachew, Tesfaye Kassa, Getnet Beyene, Rawleigh Howe, Biruk Yeshitela. Multi-Drug Resistant Bacteria and Associated Factors among Reproductive Age Women with Significant Bacteriuria. EMJ 2019 ; Supplement 1: 31
  • Tsegaye Alemayehu, Endale Tadesse, Sosina Ayalew, Bezaye Nigusse, Biruk Yeshitila, Anteneh Amsalu, Abraham Aseffa. High Burden of Nosocomial Infections Caused by Multi-Drug Resistant Pathogens in Pediatric Patients at Hawassa University Comprehensive Specialized Hospital. EMJ 2019 ; Supplement 1:45
  •  Zeleke Ayenew, Habtamu Biazn, Solomon Gebre-Selassie, Biruk yeshitela, Adane Mihret, Tamrat Abebe. Enteric Pathogens and Antimicrobial Susceptibility Profile among Pediatric Patients with Diarrhea in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. EMJ 2019 ; Supplement 1: 57
  •  Sebsib Neway, Kassu Desta, Walelign Dessie, Tsehayinesh Lema, Biruk Yeshitila. Bacterial Profile and Antimicrobial Susceptibility Patterns from External Ocular Infections and Associated Risk Factors at the All Africa Leprosy Rehabilitation and Training Center (Alert), Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. EMJ 2019 ; Supplement 1: 67
  • Rawleigh Howe, Ebba Abate, Berhanu Seyoum, Tesfaye Kassa, Tamrat Abebe, Seifegebriel Teshome, Habtamu Biazin, Getnet Ayalew, Mekuanint Geta, Rebie Kedir, Belayneh Dimah, Fitsum Abebe, Seifudin Usman, , Andargachew Mulu, Adane Mihret, Taye Tolera Balcha, Abraham Aseffa.  Exploring the Impact of Childhood HBV Vaccination in Ethiopia: A Synopsis and Discussion of Preliminary Findings. EMJ 2019 ; Supplement 2: 87
  •  Mekuanint Geta, Getnet Ayalew, Endalew Yizengaw, Adane Mihret, Abraham Aseffa, Rowliegh Howe, Feleke Moges, Ebba Abate. Seroprevalence of Hepatitis B Virus Infection and Associated Factors Among Mothers In Gondar, North-West Ethiopia: A Population Based Study. EMJ 2019 ; Supplement 1: 97
  • Belayne Dimah Taye, Tesfaye Kassa, Lule Teshager, Rebie Kedir Addisu Gize Yeshanew, Abraham Aseffa, Rawleigh Howe, Adane Mihret.  Prevalence and Associated Risk Factors of Hepatitis B and C Virus Infections among Mothers in Jimma, South West Ethiopia: A Community-Based Study. EMJ 2019 ; Supplement 2: 109
  • Fitsum Abebe, Berhanu Seyoum, Zelalem Teklemariam, Lemessa Oljira, Azeb Tarekegne, Fiker Bekele, Adane Mihret, Abraham Aseffa, Rawleigh Howe. Seroprevalence of Hepatitis B Virus Surface Antigen, Anti-Hepatitis C Virus Antibody and their Associated Factors among Mothers Living in Harar, Eastern Ethiopia. EMJ 2019 ; Supplement 2: 119
  •  Habtamu Biazin, Seifegebriel Teshome, Zeleke Ayenew, Tamratabebe, Adane Mihret, Abraham Aseffa, Rawleigh Howe. Determining Seroprevalence of Hepatitis B And C Virus Infections And Associated Risk Factors Among Apparently Healthy Mothers In Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. EMJ 2019 ; Supplement 2: 129
  •  Getnet Ayalew, Abate Assefa, Antenehamsalu, Mekuanint Geta, Adane Mihret, Abraham Aseffa, Rawleigh Howe, Ebba Abate.  Immune Protection of Hepatitis B Vaccine among Children Living in Gondar, Northwest Ethiopia. EMJ 2019 ; Supplement 2: 139
  • Seroprevalence Of Hepatitis B Virus Infection And Seroprotection Of Hepatitis B Vaccine Among Children In Jimma Town, Southwest Ethiopia. Rebie Kedir, Belayneh Dimah Taye, Tesfaye Kassa, Lule Teshager, Abraham Aseffa, Rawleigh Howe, Adane Mihiret, Addisu Gezie. EMJ 2019 ; Supplement 2: 147
  • Serum Level of Anti-Hepatitis B Surface Antigen and Hbv Associated Factors among Vaccinated and Unvaccinated Children in Harar, Eastern Ethiopia: A Community-Based Study. Seifudin Usman, Berhanu Seyoum, Bezatu Mengiste, Azeb Tarekegne, Fiker Bekele, Adane Mihret, Abraham Aseffa, Rawleigh Howe. EMJ 2019 ; Supplement 2: 159
  • Antibody Response against Hepatitis B Virus after Vaccination and Seroprevalence of Hbv in Children in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Seifegebriel Teshome, Habtamu Biazin, Azeb Tarekegne, Tamrat Abebe, Fiker Bekele, Adane Mihret, Abraham Aseffa, Rawleigh Howe. EMJ 2019 ; Supplement 2: 167
  • Bodin J, Mihret A, Holm-Hansen C, Dembinski JL, Trieu MC, Tessema B, Tarekegne A, Yimer SA, Cox R, Aseffa A, Haneberg B, Mjaaland S. Vitamin D Deficiency is Associated with Increased Use of Antimicrobials among Preschool Girls in Ethiopia. Nutrients. 2019 7;11(3)
  • Adal M, Howe R, Kassa D, Aseffa A, Petros B. Associations of gender and serum total cholesterol with CD4+ T cell count and HIV RNA load in antiretroviral-naïve individuals in Addis Ababa.BMC Public Health. 2018 Jul 31;18(1):943
  • Adal M, Howe R, Kassa D, Aseffa A, Petros B. Malnutrition and lipid abnormalities in antiretroviral naïve HIV-infected adults in Addis Ababa: A cross-sectional study. PLoS One. 2018 Apr 19;13(4):e0195942
  • Park SE, Pham DT, Boinett C, Wong VK, Pak GD, Panzner U, Espinoza LMC, von Kalckreuth V, Im J, Schütt-Gerowitt H, Crump JA, Breiman RF, Adu-Sarkodie Y, Owusu-Dabo E, Rakotozandrindrainy R, Soura AB, Aseffa A, Gasmelseed N, Keddy KH, May J, Sow AG, Aaby P, Biggs HM, Hertz JT, Montgomery JM, Cosmas L, Olack B, Fields B, Sarpong N, Razafindrabe TJL, Raminosoa TM, Kabore LP, Sampo E, Teferi M, Yeshitela B, et al, Marks F, Baker S. The phylogeography and incidence of multi-drug resistant typhoid fever in sub-Saharan Africa. Nat Commun. 2018 Nov 30;9(1):5094.
  • Bitew Kifilie A, Dagnew M, Tegenie B, Yeshitela B, Howe R, Abate E.Bacterial Profile, Antibacterial Resistance Pattern, and Associated Factors from Women Attending Postnatal Health Service at University of Gondar Teaching Hospital, Northwest Ethiopia. Int J Microbiol. 2018 Feb 25;2018: 3165391.
  • Huruy K, Mulu A, Liebert UG, Maier M. Correction: HIV-1C proviral DNA for detection of drug resistance mutations. PLoS One. 2018 Nov 1;13(11):
  • Belyhun Y, Moges F, Endris M, Asmare B, Amare B, Bekele D, Tesfaye S, Alemayehu M, Biadgelegne F, Mulu A, Assefa Y. Ocular bacterial infections and antibiotic resistance patterns in patients attending Gondar Teaching Hospital, Northwest Ethiopia.BMC Res Notes. 2018 Aug 17;11(1):597
  • Baron U, Werner J, Schildknecht K, Schulze JJ, Mulu A, Liebert UG, Sack U, Speckmann C, Gossen M, Wong RJ, Stevenson DK, Babel N, Schürmann D, Baldinger T, Bacchetta R, Grützkau A, Borte S, Olek S. Epigenetic immune cell counting in human blood samples for immunodiagnostics. SciTransl Med. 2018 Aug 1;10(452).
  • Ferede G, Tiruneh M, Abate E, Wondimeneh Y, Damtie D, Gadisa E, Howe R, Aseffa A, Tessema BA serologic study of dengue in northwest Ethiopia: Suggesting preventive and control measures.PLoSNegl Trop Dis. 2018 May 31;12(5):e0006430.
  • Greenwood BM, Aseffa A, Caugant DA, Diallo K, Kristiansen PA, Maiden MCJ, Stuart JM, Trotter CL. Narrative review of methods and findings of recent studies on the carriage of meningococci and other Neisseria species in the African Meningitis Belt.Trop Med Int Health. 2018 Nov 21
  • Ferede G, Tiruneh M, Abate E, Wondimeneh Y, Gadisa E, Howe R, Aseffa A, Tessema B. A study of clinical, hematological, and biochemical profiles of patients with dengue viral infections in Northwest Ethiopia: implications for patient management. BMC Infect Dis. 2018 Dec 4;18(1):616.
  • Steinmetz I, Wagner GE, Kanyala E, Sawadogo M, Soumeya H, Teferi M, Andargie E, Yeshitela B, YabaAtsé-Achi L, Sanogo M, Bonfoh B, Rakotozandrindrainy R, PongomboShongo C, Shongoya Pongombo M, KasambaIlunga E, Lichtenegger S, Assig K, May J, Bertherat E, Owusu M, Owusu-Dabo E, Adu-Sarkodie Y. Melioidosis in Africa: Time to Uncover the True Disease Load. Trop Med Infect Dis. 2018 Jun 10;3(2).
  • Cooper LV, Boukary RM, Aseffa A, Mihret W, Collard JM, Daugla D, Hodgson A, Sokhna C, Omotara B, Sow S, Quaye SL, Diallo K, Manigart O, Maiden MCJ, Findlow H, Borrow R, Stuart JM, Greenwood BM, Trotter CLInvestigation of correlates of protection against pharyngeal carriage of Neisseria meningitidis genogroups W and Y in the African meningitis belt. PLoS One. 2017;12(8):e0182575
  • Adal M, Howe R, Kassa D, Aseffa A, Petros B.  Malnutrition and lipid abnormalities in antiretroviral naïve HIV-infected adults in Addis Ababa: A cross-sectional study. PLoS One. 2018; 13(4):e0195942.
  • Bitew Kifilie A, Dagnew M, Tegenie B, Yeshitela B, Howe R, Abate E. Bacterial Profile, Antibacterial Resistance Pattern, and Associated Factors from Women Attending Postnatal Health Service at University of Gondar Teaching Hospital, Northwest Ethiopia. Int J Microbiol. 2018;2018:3165391
  • G/Eyesus T, Moges, F., Eshetie, S., Yeshitela, B., & Abate, E. (2017). Bacterial etiologic agents causing neonatal sepsis and associated risk factors in Gondar, Northwest Ethiopia. BMC pediatrics17(1), 137.
  • Sharew B, Mulu A, Teka B, Tesfaye T HIV-Sero-prevalence trend among blood donors in North East Ethiopia. Afr Health Sci. 2017 Sep;17(3):712-718
  • Mulu A, Maier M, Liebert UG.  Upward trends of acquired drug resistances in Ethiopian HIV-1C isolates: A decade longitudinal study. . PLoS One. 2017 Oct 19
  • Mekonnen D, Derbie A, Biadglegne F, Adem Y, Zenebe Y, Mekonnen H, Gebeyaw A, Shumet A, Bereded F, Hailu D, Elfu B, Mihret A, Sack U. Knowledge and practice on magnitude, diagnosis, treatment and prevention strategies of Hepatocellular Carcinoma in Ethiopia: A Systematic Review. J. Health Dev. 2017;31(1):44-56

Bacteriology Resources

Title Date Document Type Attachments
The Typhoid Fever Surveillance in Africa Program (TSAP): Clinical, Diagnostic, and Epidemiological Methodologies 2016-05-12 11:42 Publications, Bacteriology The Typhoid Fever Surveillance in Africa Program (TSAP).pdf
The Relationship Between Invasive Nontyphoidal Salmonella Disease, Other Bacterial Bloodstream Infections, and Malaria in Sub-Saharan Africa 2016-05-12 11:41 Publications, Bacteriology The Relationship Between Invasive Nontyphoidal Clin Infect Dis.-2016-Park-S23-31(1).pdf
Bloodstream Infections and Frequency of Pretreatment Associated With Age and Hospitalization Status in Sub-Saharan Africa 2016-05-12 11:37 Publications, Bacteriology Bloodstream Infections and Frequency Clin Infect Dis.-2015-Nichols-S372-9.pdf
A Seroepidemiological Study of Serogroup A Meningococcal Infection in the African Meningitis Belt 2016-04-20 15:02 Publications, Bacteriology A Seroepidemiological Study of Serogroup A PLoS ONE Journal .pdf
Utilization of Healthcare in the Typhoid Fever Surveillance in Africa Program 2016-04-20 15:00 Publications, Bacteriology Utilization of Healthcare in the Typhoid Fever Surveillance Clin Infect Dis.-2016-Panzner-S56-68(1).pdf
Meningococcal carriage in the African meningitis belt 2015-09-15 12:36 Publications, Bacteriology Bacteriology 4.pdf
A pilot study on detection and genotyping of Human Papilloma virus isolated from clinically diagnosed Ethiopian women having cervical intraepithelial neoplasia 2015-09-15 12:33 Publications, Bacteriology Bacteriology 3.pdf
Chronic meningitis in immunocompromised adult Ethiopians visiting Tikur Anbessa Teaching Hospital and Ye’huleshet Clinic from 22003-2004 2015-09-15 12:26 Publications, Bacteriology Bacteriology 2.pdf
The Diversity of Meningococcal Carriage Acrossthe African Meningitis Belt and the Impact ofVaccination With a Group A MeningococcalConjugate Vaccine 2015-09-15 12:17 Publications, Bacteriology Bacteriology 1.pdf