Animal TB Research Group - 2023
Back from left: Dr. Tanya Kerr, Stacey Engel, Dr Wynand Goosen, Prof. Michele Miller, Rachiel Gumbo; Dr Abisola Okunola, Dr Giovanni Ghielmetti; Front from left: Rebecca Dwyer, Leka Mhlophe, Dr Megan Matthews; missing: Dr Carmel Witte, Debbie Cooke, Shanae Meadows, Intimate Shongwe
The Animal TB Research Group uses a One Health approach to TB research at wildlife, livestock, human, and environmental interfaces. Our interdisciplinary approach involves collaborations with scientists, veterinarians, stakeholders, and policymakers to develop effective strategies for the management and control of TB in animals and humans.
Our team strives to improve understanding and generate knowledge of the pathogenesis, epidemiology, host immune responses, and pathogen biology of Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (MTBC) organisms in a wide variety of animal species. This includes investigating the role of host genetics and immunology in susceptibility to bovine tuberculosis, the genetic diversity of mycobacterial pathogens and their impact on wildlife and livestock, as well as the development of diagnostic assays for numerous host species.
Through our research, we aim to provide evidence-based solutions for the control and prevention of TB in animals and humans. Our work has led to the development of novel diagnostic tools that can be used to improve TB detection and surveillance worldwide. Additionally, our research has contributed to the understanding of the transmission dynamics of TB between animal and human populations, as well as the role of the environment, highlighting the importance of a One Health approach in tackling this disease.