Dr. Sayera Banu Dr. Sayera Banu  
Associate Scientist, Tuberculosis Laboratory
International Centre for Diarrheal Disease Research
US Callaborator: William R. Jacobs Jr., Ph.D.

Dr. Banu got involved in the AITRP at Einstein in 2006. As part of the activities of the program she visited Dr. William R. Jacobs, Jr. laboratory at Einstein for a period of two months in 2007. In collaboration with Dr. Jacobs, she started working on the project titled "Rapid diagnosis of tuberculosis in Bangladesh using novel and molecular techniques".

During her visit, she learned the luciferase reporter mycobacteriophages (LRPs) assay and worked on a new construct of the phage which will be suitable for use in the diagnostic laboratory in developing countries like Bangladesh. Her student Khaja Mafiz Uddin is now visiting Dr. Jacobs laboratory and working on this project. He plans to use the test on the clinical samples from suspected TB cases from Bangladesh. Once the assay is validated at Einstein the technology would be transferred to ICDDR,B Tuberculosis laboratory and will be tested in the survey in an urban community in Bangladesh. During her visit she also worked with Drs. Neel R. Gandhi and Sarita Shah of AECOM to develop a proposal to determine the prevalence of TB in an urban community in Bangladesh. She has developed a larger population-based study to perform a household survey of around 150,000 adults living in a low-income urban community in Bangladesh. They would perform active TB case finding using symptom screening, mycobacrterial culture and drug-susceptibility testing to determine the prevalence of TB and drug-resistant TB, and molecular genotyping to determine the transmission dynamics. This program has greatly increased the knowledge base and skills of the Bangladeshi researchers in the field of tuberculosis.


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