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Unravelling Mycobacterium tuberculosis genomic diversity and transmission patterns in low and high tuberculosis burden settings Event as iCalendar

05 June 2019

1 - 2pm

Venue: Mac 1 Biology Building

Location: 5 Symonds St

Host: SBS

Contact info: Dr Ghader Bashiri

Contact email:

Dr Htin Lin Aung
Dr Htin Lin Aung

Speaker: Dr Htin Lin Aung, Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Otago

Tuberculosis (TB) is a curable disease caused mainly by the bacterium Mycobacterium tuberculosis, and yet paradoxically it claims over 1.6 million lives annually. Of growing concern is the prevalence of multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) and extensively drug-resistant (XDR-TB) being the leading cause of deaths related to antimicrobial resistance (AMR). 

Despite New Zealand being a low TB burden country, Māori have a disproportionally high rate compared to New Zealand Europeans. Interestingly, there is a New Zealand unique M. tuberculosis strain, which is highly prevalent in the Māori population. On the other hand, Myanmar, one of 14 countries listed by World Health Organization (WHO) for the high burden of TB, TB and HIV, and MDR-TB, has diverseM. tuberculosis strains. 

WHO has called for multi-sectoral action together with innovative approaches to expedite progress to combat TB. In line with this, we have established a multi-disciplinary research team consisting of academics, clinicians, epidemiologists, social scientists and health economists. In this seminar, Dr Aung will discuss how, as a result of this multi-sectoral collaboration, he is using whole genome sequencing (WGS) to unravel M. tuberculosis genomic diversity and transmission patterns in New Zealand and Myanmar, and translating this WGS-guided evidence to TB healthcare policymaking and practice.

For more information please contact Dr Ghader Bashiri,

Please note this seminar will take place on Wednesday 5 June.