Barry G Combs

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The population genetics of Serpulina pilosicoli and its molecular epidemiology in villages in the Eastern Highlands province of Papua New Guinea were investigated. Multilocus enzyme electrophoresis (MLEE) was used to analyse 164 isolates from humans and animals. These were divided into 33 electrophoretic types (ETs), four of which contained 65% of the(More)
BACKGROUND Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) is an important cause of foodborne illness. In Australia, risk factors for STEC infection have not been examined at a national level. METHODS We conducted a case-control study in 6 Australian jurisdictions from 2003 through 2007. A case patient was defined as a person from whom STEC was isolated or(More)
Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests were established for detection of Serpulina hyodysenteriae, the agent of swine dysentery, and S. pilosicoli, the agent of intestinal spirochaetosis. Both reactions were specific when tested with DNA from 107 strains of various intestinal spirochaetes. For diagnostic use, faeces were plated to selective medium, and(More)
Multilocus enzyme electrophoresis (MEE) was used to examine the extent of genetic diversity amongst 98 isolates of Serpulina (Treponema) hyodysenteriae. The species contained four major genetic divisions (A, B, C and D) and 29 electrophoretic types (ETs). Division D was relatively distinct, being separated from the other three divisions by fixed allelic(More)
In a survey of five villages in the Eastern Highlands of Papua New Guinea, Serpulina pilosicoli was isolated from rectal swabs from 113 of 496 individuals (22.8%). Colonization rates ranged from 22.6-30.1% in four of the villages but was only 8.6% in the other village. In comparison colonization was demonstrated in only 5 of 54 indigenous people (9.3%) and(More)
The measurement of the avidity of cytomegalovirus (CMV) immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies has been shown by several investigators to be useful in identifying and excluding primary CMV infections in pregnant women. In this work, we examined the diagnostic utility of reflex testing of CMV IgM-positive specimens from pregnant women by using a CMV IgG avidity(More)
In 2010, an outbreak of cyclosporiasis affected passengers and crew on two successive voyages of a cruise ship that departed from and returned to Fremantle, Australia. There were 73 laboratory-confirmed and 241 suspected cases of Cyclospora infection reported in passengers and crew from the combined cruises. A case-control study performed in crew members(More)
Molecular characterization of a total of 52 human isolates of Salmonella typhi from Papua New Guinea was performed by using pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) after digestion of chromosomal DNA with three restriction endonucleases, XbaI (5'-TCTAGA-3'), AvrII (5'-CCTAGG-3'), and SpeI (5'-ACTAGT-3'). Of the 52 isolates tested, 11 were obtained from(More)
BACKGROUND Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) are an important cause of gastroenteritis in Australia and worldwide and can also result in serious sequelae such as haemolytic uraemic syndrome (HUS). In this paper we describe the epidemiology of STEC in Australia using the latest available data. METHODS National and state notifications data, as(More)