Molecular Data for Infectious Diseases
Learn how to choose and implement the best available molecular methods for infectious disease projects conducted in low-resource settings.
Deadline: 1 September 2023
5 ECTS Credits
Despite rapid advances in molecular methods, their implementation in low-resource environments often remains cumbersome due to logistic, financial, and human resource constraints. MID focusses on the selection and analysis of appropriate assays and their implementation in a particular research setting:
- MID is a course for experienced molecular biologists.
- The main focus is to select and implement the proper molecular tools for a given project, and to collect good quality data.
- Such project is an epidemiological or clinical infectious disease study in a resource-limited setting.
- The molecular tools are DNA or RNA-based.
- Examples of topics are pathogen and vector detection and identification and their application in clinical and epidemiological studies.
You need be aware that MID is NOT:
- A course on molecular biology techniques. When you follow MID, we assume you are already familiar with the technical aspects. In the course we focus on applying these techniques in a correct way, implement good quality controls, and building the tools for collecting good quality data.
- There is no hands-on lab training in MID. We assume that MID students are experienced molecular biologists, and are able to carry out a molecular biology protocol correctly when provided with a good SOP.
- A training on the specific disease or pathogen you work on. We use pre-designed projects from the research field of teachers and coaches, which means you probably need to step away from your own work for the duration of the course.
- A bioinformatics course. Even though some parts of the course require application of bioinformatic tools and in silico sequence analysis, this is not the focus of MID. If you are expecting a training on next-generation sequencing, please do not register for MID.
At the end of the course the student should be able to:
- select the most appropriate molecular methods for detection or characterization of an etiological agent or vector, in order to answer specific questions in a clinical or epidemiological research context, and given the restrictions in terms of infrastructure, logistics, personnel, ethics, and budget.
- plan accurate molecular data collection and analysis in a resource-limited context.
- infer research conclusions given the limitations of the proposed methods and sample.
- present the selected methodology and implementation plan orally and in writing, with clear argumentation of relevance and feasibility.
- work actively in a team to design and present the implementation strategy.
- explain clinical and epidemiological study designs and concepts.