Academic thesis: Molecular epidemiology of tuberculosis in Vietnam

On 3 February 2014 Vietnamese microbiologist Mai Nguyet Thu Huyen will defend her PhD thesis entitled “Molecular epidemiology of tuberculosis in Vietnam” at the Radboud University in Nijmegen, Netherlands. Her research focused on the role of genetic variation of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb), the causative agent of tuberculosis (TB), in the spread of TB in the community, the response to TB treatment and the development of resistance to antituberculosis drugs. Of particular interest was the Beijing genotype, a strain of Mtb that causes one third of all TB cases in Vietnam. In Vietnam and many other countries Beijing genotype strains often show drug resistance as well as increased tendency to spread in the community. Therefore the Beijing genotype is increasingly regarded as a “superbug” that may jeopardize TB control worldwide.