Owen J Billington

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Drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis is a major threat to public health. In clinical practice, a limited number of resistance mutations in a short sequence of the beta subunit of RNA polymerase (encoded by rpoB) have been described. Spontaneous resistance to rifampin was induced in vitro in M. tuberculosis H37Rv (ATCC 9360). Only three resistance(More)
Nucleic acid amplification techniques (NAATs) have been demonstrated to make significant improvements in the diagnosis of tuberculosis (TB), particularly in the time to diagnosis and the diagnosis of smear-negative TB. The BD ProbeTec strand displacement amplification (SDA) system for the diagnosis of pulmonary and non-pulmonary tuberculosis was evaluated.(More)
Moxifloxacin is an 8-methoxyquinolone compound with activity against a wide range of bacteria. We tested its activity in comparison with four other quinolones and isoniazid against clinical isolates of mycobacteria. It proved to be the most active of the quinolones tested against Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MIC90 0.25 mg/L), Mycobacterium(More)
Luria and Delbruck identified that the frequency of mutation was subject to considerable fluctuation. They argued that the large fluctuation in the number of organism surviving exposure to bacteriophage meant that resistance was acquired through mutation rather than a physiological adaptation to the bacteriophage. Mutations that arose early in the broth(More)
OBJECTIVES To audit the time taken to obtain laboratory confirmation of infection with Mycobacterium tuberculosis using in-house methods of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and culture and referral to a reference laboratory. METHODS Retrospective collection of data from laboratory records covering a period of 1 year. RESULTS Median time to(More)
Recent studies have shown a difference in the genotype of resistant bacteria following passage in animals compared to those passaged in vitro. This suggests that organisms rapidly adapt to their environment of growth. We sought to investigate whether this phenomenon occurred in human infection and whether changes could be detected in the fitness (growth(More)
The insertion sequence IS6110 has an important role in diagnostic PCR and typing of Mycobacterium tuberculosis. We have evaluated a one-tube nested PCR which detects IS6110. Positive results were obtained with DNAs from four of four M. tuberculosis isolates, seven of eight M. fortuitum isolates, seven of seven M. avium-M. intracellulare complex isolates,(More)
Entamoeba histolytica (EH) in homosexual men is generally considered to be pathogenic. To test this hypothesis, the generally accepted features of invasion (haematophagous trophozoites in faeces; high-titre serum antibody; moderate to severe acute inflammatory change; and presence of EH in the mucosa on rectal biopsy) and the zymodeme pattern of cultured(More)
Mycobacterium tuberculosis converts pyrazinamide to its active form by using the enzyme pyrazinamidase. This enzyme is coded for on the pncA gene, and mutations in the pncA gene result in absence of active enzyme, conferring resistance to the drug pyrazinamide. We investigated 27 strains of Mycobacterium tuberculosis suspected of being multidrug resistant.(More)