Speaker : Eta Ashu – McMaster University, Department of Biology (Graduate Student with Dr. J.P. Xu)
Title : Molecular epidemiology of the fungal pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus at global and local scales
Aspergillus fumigatus is a ubiquitous mold capable of causing severe infections in humans. Infections caused by A. fumigatus can often be treated using antifungals. However, there have been increasing reports of drug resistance and treatment failures around the world over the last two decades. In my thesis work, multilocus sequences and microsatellite markers, among others, were used to examine the distribution of A. fumigatus genotypes and drug susceptibility patterns in order to investigate the origins and distributions of antifungal resistance at both global and local levels. We analyze A. fumigatus strains from 15 countries, including those from Hamilton, Ontario. Our findings will potentially contribute towards establishing effective long-term management strategies against A. fumigatus infections locally and globally.