Head of unit: Prof. Jan Jacobs
The Unit of Tropical Bacteriology (UTB) was created in 2008 in the Department of Clinical Sciences at the Institute of Tropical Medicine (ITM), Antwerp, Belgium. It is headed by Prof. Jan Jacobs (MD - clinical microbiologist. UTB combines biomedical research, education and support of laboratory services. We focus on antibiotic resistance and both generic and specific laboratory capacity sharing. In order to achieve real impact we work closely together with the laboratory teams of our partner institutions in low- and middle-income countries.
The UTB is involved in capacity building and operational research programs in low-resource settings addressing laboratory quality, clinical bacteriology and development and implementation of adapted diagnostics.
Research is further extended to tropical bacterial diseases such as invasive salmonellosis, cholera and melioidosis. Oversea partners and projects are located – amongst others – in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Benin, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Ethiopia, Mozambique, and Peru.
As to education and training the UTB is actively involved in the courses of Tropical Medicine and International Health (lectures about hospital infection control and tropical bacterial diseases, laboratory medicine) and organisator of the AIM course, a short course on the containment of antibiotic resistance in low-resource settings.