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Cambridge Infectious Diseases

An Interdisciplinary Research Centre at the University of Cambridge

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Interdisciplinary Infectious Diseases Groups and Projects

Giving your research output visible global influence.

Our members are involved in a huge variety of linked research initiatives. Below we have highlighted a selection of current pan-University interdisciplinary programmes relating to global infectious diseases research, which have garnered strategic support through Cambridge Infectious Diseases IRC, and which span multiple departments and involve collaborations with partners outside of the University.

The University of Cambridge is at the forefront of the search for systems based solutions to some of the world’s most pressing problems, seeking to be a global force for positive change. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), approximately 14 million people globally die each year from infectious diseases (i.e. one-fourth of total annual deaths).  In all world sectors, infectious disease morbidity severely compromises not only the health of populations, but also impacts economic productivity and social stability. See how our researchers are improving the lives of people around the world by finding solutions to reduce the global burden of infectious diseases and improve planetary health.

  • Pathogen Biology and Evolution. Evolution is a key aspect of the biology of many pathogens, driving processes ranging from immune escape to changes in virulence.  HIV
  • Infectious Disease Dynamics. Epidemiology and Mathematical Modelling provide vital mathematical and statistical tools to study the spatial spread of epidemics in populations.  Groups working on Mathematical Modelling
  • Drugs and Vaccines. Vaccines and the discovery of new antimicrobial drugs are one of our most effective means for controlling infectious diseases.  Groups working on Drugs & Vaccines

  • Innovative Technology. Enabling innovation and access to health technologies remains a key strategy in combating infectious diseases in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). 

 

Key Programmes and Groups

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Centre for Pathogen Evolution

The Pathogen Evolution Group is dedicated to research in antigenically variable pathogens and pathogen evolution, conducting research focused on improving our understanding and ability to predict pathogen evolution in humans and other animals, providing support to the World Health Organization (WHO) influenza vaccine strain selection process, and developing and distributing free high-quality software.

Current Director: Prof Derek Smith, Department of Zoology.

Centre for Pathogen Evolution Website >

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Cambridge Africa (2008- present)

Established in 2008 thru a consortia of CID members and collaborators, Cambridge-Africa is an umbrella programme at the University of Cambridge that comprises a range of proactive, coordinated, multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary initiatives in Cambridge and Africa that help to strengthen research capacity and scholarship in African universities and research institutes. Current Director: Dr Caroline Trotter, Department of Veterinary Medicine 

Cambridge Africa Website>

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The Wellcome Trust - Cambridge Centre for Global Health Research (2013-2019)

The Wellcome Trust-Cambridge Centre for Global Heath Research promotes research excellence to meet global health challenges, by supporting researchers and research institutions in low and middle-income countries, through equitable collaborations and partnerships. WT-CCGHR is capitalising on the extensive basic biomedical and health-related research capacity across many departments and research institutes at the University of Cambridge and the Wellcome Sanger Institute, and using these to support research capacity building and knowledge exchange partnerships with African universities and institutes. Current Director: Prof Ian Goodfellow.

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Cambridge-Chennai Centre Partnership on Antimicrobial Resistant Tuberculosis

A multidisciplinary team of international researchers, from across a number of disciplines, will look to develop new diagnostic tools and new treatments to address the sharp rise in cases of multidrug resistant Tuberculosis (MDR-TB). The partnership between the University of Cambridge and the National Institute for Research in Tuberculosis (NIRT) in Chennai, India, will generate a rich and lasting clinical and genomic dataset. Prof Sharon Peacock, Dr Andres Floto, Prof Tom Blundell.

 

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Surveillance and control of zoonoses in emerging livestock systems (ZELS): South East Asia Pig and Poultry Partnership (2015-2020)

Increasing consumption of meat in developing countries, especially in SE Asia, is leading to new demands on pig and poultry supply chains and emergence of new production networks. This project will deliver interdisciplinary understanding of interactions between (1) meat production, the environment and supply practices, (2) socio-economic and export pressures, cultural understandings and perceptions of risk to humans and livestock, and (3) the infection dynamics and diversity of zoonotic infections and antimicrobial resistance determinants in these systems. Dr Dan Tucker. 

STEPS Pig Partnerships WebSite>

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ETHICOBOTS

Expansion of dairy farms around major urban centres in Ethiopia has created hotspots of TB infected exotic cattle. The potential for rapid spread of bTB across the cattle trade routes through amplification by the dairy farms in peri-urban areas is a real emerging danger. This multi-disciplinary research is developing control strategies for bTB in Ethiopia based on investigation and analysis of the epidemiology of the disease and its determinants through a series of interlinked social and biological science studies, encompassing the emerging livestock system, livelihood of affected farmers and available tools for bTB control. 

Ethicobots Web Site>

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Excising Infection from the Surgical environment [ExIse]

Excising Infection in the Surgical Environment [ExISE]' is a newly funded Arts and Humanities Research Council research project within the major cross UK Research Council initiative 'Tackling Antimicrobial Resistance'. The perhaps unusually interdisciplinary team of academics in infectious diseases, pathogen transmission, architecture, history and philosophy of science, fluid mechanics and history of art were brought together thru Cambridge Infectious Diseases Interdisciplinary Research Centre, and will introduce a design perspective to antimicrobial resistance research by investigating the physical environments for surgery. 

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Cambridge Institute for Therapeutic Immunology and Infectious Disease

Infectious disease, antimicrobial resistance and autoimmunity are three of humanity’s deadliest foes and a major global challenge. Cambridge is one of the world’s leading research universities, working across disciplines with international partners to find solutions to global these challenges. Many CID members are housed together at CITIID. With researchers working directly in countries throughout the globe, we have a very real understanding of the impact diseases have on patients. Many of our projects are in third world countries where socio-economic factors make the impacts of these diseases even greater.

 

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