Parasitology and Helminth Control

 

Intro

Parasitology and Helminth Control

The sustainable control of parasitic species causing agricultural-, veterinary- and biomedical- diseases will increasingly rely on the development of more sensitive diagnostics/biomarkers as well as more effective prophylactic vaccines, pesticides and therapeutic drugs.  This view has gathered significant momentum and has recently been acknowledged by the UK government (£1B Ross fund for supporting the global fight against infectious diseases), the World Health Organisation (roadmap for eliminating neglected tropical diseases - NTDs) and public-private partnerships (the London Declaration on NTDs). Within IBERS, we have collaboratively embraced this challenge and begun developing innovative approaches for combating parasitic diseases of animals and humans.

Our aims and objectives: By engaging in basic-science-, translational-, co-evolutionary driven- and systems-based- investigations, we continue to refine a sustainable programme of research that is underpinned by interdisciplinary, inter-agency and highly-strategic public private partnerships for collectively solving some of the world’s major health problems caused by important biomedical and veterinary pathogens. 

Our approaches: Our approaches involve gene level investigations, application of functional genomics-based technologies, biomarker/vaccine/drug target discovery, vector/intermediate host biology, host-parasite-microbiota interactions, immunological investigations, evolutionary studies, ecological epidemiology, mathematical modelling, GIS, satellite and aerial remote sensing and climate modelling. Our studies consider a range of infectious diseases caused by viruses, bacteria, protozoa, microsporidia and helminths. We work together with developed as well as low and middle income country (LMIC) partners spanning HEIs, government and private organisations to achieve our goals.

History

History

There is a long history of Parasitology at Aberystwyth.

Through this impressive legacy and ongoing investment, Aberystwyth University will ensure that its parasitology activities remain internationally competitive, whilst delivering the very best in undergraduate and post-graduate training.

Projects

Main Projects

An extensive variety of research is currently being delivered in the area of parasitology and helminth control and a brief selection of recent projects is provided below.

  • Establishment of an Interdisciplinary Research Centre – the Barrett Centre for Helminth Control(BCHC; http://bchc.aber.ac.uk).
  • Working with VetHub1 to shape animal/public health Research & Development as well as commercial opportunities.
  • Anti-schistosomal drug discovery funded by the Wellcome Trust Neglected Tropical Disease Flagship and Pathfinder schemes to develop new drugs for treating schistosomiasis.
  • Flatworm Functional Genomics Initiative (FUGI) funding provided under a Wellcome Trust Strategic award to develop genome editing, single cell atlases and immortalised cell lines for schistosomes and tapeworms.
  • Developing precision livestock technology for parasite control under HEFCW funding to assist farmers in sustainable control of helminths in livestock.
  • FLOODMAL, predicting the short-term dynamics of malaria vector hotspots and assessing the potential impact of future climate change on malaria transmission and funded by the Natural Environment Research Council.
  • WEFO funding for the genomic analysis of Toxoplasma gondii direct from clinical samples using selective genome enrichment.
  • Research to improve Cryptosporidium diagnostics and understanding of transmission by mining Cryptosporidium genomes, funded by WEFO.

 

Outputs

Outputs

 

  • Roboworm – An automated, high-throughput imaging platform enabling the repositioning of existing drugs or the identification of new compounds as next-generation anthelmintics.
  • Co-development of the FECPAKG2 system to manage fluke infection in sheep and cattle.
  • Increasing interest and uptake of Science Technology Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects by school pupils in Wales under the WEFO & Welsh Government-funded Trio Sci Cymru Aber STEM
  • Various commercial contracts for Fasciola hepatica screening and parasite material supply to UK health service providers and private animal health companies.
  • Intellectual property protection – current patents filed by AU involve chemical matter (PF36021GB1 and 20185806.5-1112) and diagnostics (P35118GB1) for treating or detecting infections caused by bacteria, protozoan and metazoan pathogens.

 

Principal Investigators

Principal Investigators

Picture Name Email Telephone
Prof Peter Brophy pmb@aber.ac.uk +44 (0) 1970 622332
Prof Joanne Hamilton jvh@aber.ac.uk +44 (0) 1970 621526
Prof Karl Hoffmann krh@aber.ac.uk +44 (0) 1970 622237
Dr Rhys Jones raj22@aber.ac.uk +44 (0) 1970 622266
Dr Russ Morphew rom@aber.ac.uk +44 (0) 1970 622314
Dr Justin Pachebat jip@aber.ac.uk +44 (0) 1970 622347
Dr Claire Risley clr25@aber.ac.uk +44 (0) 1970 622231
Dr Martin Swain mts11@aber.ac.uk +44 (0) 1970 622296

Publications

Publications

More publications on the Research Portal »