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Molecular typing of clinical Clostridium difficile isolates
Slovenia (SloMSIC) - University of Maribor, Maribor
Department for Microbiology, Faculty of medicine, University of Maribor, Taborska 8, 2000 Maribor, Slovenia
prof. dr. Maja Rupnik
Sandra Janezic, Aleksander Kocuvan
Type of Research Project
- Basic science
What is the background of the project?
Clostridium difficile (C. difficile) is currently one of the most important nosocomial pathogens. Molecular typing methods are therefore important part in outbreak investigations. The laboratory of dr. Rupnik is the worldwide reference laboratory for studies of variant C. difficile strains. Depending on length of stay the project will include 1) isolation of C. difficile from selected group of patients or from environmental samples and 2) molecular characterization of strains with two typing methods: ribotyping and toxinotyping. In the case of shorter visits only molecular characterization will be done on already isolated strains. The samples from which C. difficile would be isolated depends on current lab projects (e.g. patients on given antibiotic therapy, healthy adults).
What is the aim of the project?
The aim of the project is to characterize C. difficile population in given patient group or in given environment (e.g. waste water treatment plants) and compare it to strains isolated generally from patients. This contributes to better understanding of the reservoirs and transmission and to data on current epidemiology in the local health care facility.
What techniques and methods are used?
Molecular typing methods
What is the role of the student?
- If the project includes “lab work”
- the student will take active part in the practical aspect of the project
- The tasks will be done under supervision
What are the tasks expected to be accomplished by the student?
Depending on length of stay the project will include 1) isolation of C. difficile from selected group of patients or from environmental samples and 2) molecular characterization of strains with two typing methods: ribotyping and toxinotyping. In the case of shorter visits only molecular characterization will be done on already isolated strains.
Will there be any theoretical teaching provided (preliminary readings, lectures, courses, seminars etc)
What is expected from the student at the end of the research exchange? What will be the general outcome of the student?
- The student will prepare a scientific report - The student’s name will be mentioned in a future publication
What skills are required of the student? Is there any special knowledge or a certain level of studies needed?
Student should have basic laboratory skills (e.g. pipetting, bacterial culturing) and should be interested in medical microbiology.
Are there any legal limitations in the student’s involvement
Type of students accepted
This project accepts: - Medical students - Graduated students (less than 6 months) - Pre-Medical students from the American-British system
- Rupnik M; Wilcox MH; Gerding DN. (2009) Clostridium difficile infection: new developments in epidemiology and pathogenesis. Nat Rev Microbiol. 7(7):526-36. Review. - Rupnik M; Janezic S. An Update on Clostridium difficile Toxinotyping. J Clin Microbiol. 2016; 54(1):13- 8.
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