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PHRI Outreach Publications

Systems Biology of Tuberculosiscover

This publication discusses in detail the systems biology of tuberculosis and how it can be applied to the control of tuberculosis, including the development of new treatments. This book includes a chapter contributed by Drs. Marila Gennaro, Richard Pine, and Yuri Bushkin, Faculties at PHRI at NJMS.

For more information on this book, please visit www.springer.com

Bacterial Gene Regulation and Transcriptional Networkscover

Co-authored by Marila Gennaro, Senior Faculty at PHRI and Professor in the Department of Medicine at NJMS.

The publication reviews and discusses the many different aspects and latest developments in research of bacterial gene regulation at the transcriptional level. For more information on this book, please visit www.horizonpress.com

Immune Responses and Immunity to Tuberculosiscover

Two publications by Gilla Kaplan, Senior Faculty at PHRI and Professor in the Department of Medicine at NJMS.

Tuberculosis remains a global epidemic to rival any other. Dr Gilla Kaplan describes her illuminating research into how a comprehensive understanding of tuberculosis as a multiplicity of strains and host-pathogen interactions could contribute to control of the epidemic

Select this following link to download the article on Immune Responses and the next link to download the article on Immunity to Tuberculosis

Finding New TB Therapiescover

Veronique Dartois, Faculty at PHRI and Professor in the Department of Medicine at NJMS.

Staying on the cutting edge of medical research has always been an imperative for New Jersey Medical School’s Public Health Research Institute (PHRI), just as it has been for Celgene Global Health, a division of Celgene Corporation. This past year, the global biopharmaceutical company continued to support University programs with a $500,000 grant to establish the PHRI Inspiration Fund. The fund has enabled the Institute, highly regarded for its work in TB and other opportunistic infectious diseases, to hire a new faculty member focused on TB research.

To download this article, which was published in UMDNJ's Foundation Magazine
please follow this link

Progress Towards Developing an Effective Vaccine Against HIV-1cover

By Abraham Pinter, Senior Faculty at PHRI and Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics at NJMS.

A critical requirement for halting the spread of the AIDS epidemic is the development of an effective vaccine against HIV-1, the virus responsible for this disease. Despite a considerable worldwide effort, progress towards a protective vaccine has been slow and limited. A strong neutralizing antibody response is an essential component of a protective viral vaccine. Unfortunately, typical circulating strains of HIV-1 tend to be highly resistant to neutralization by antibodies commonly induced upon infection or vaccination. However, recent progress on several fronts has suggested for the first time that such a vaccine may be possible, and the Pinter lab has been in the forefront in exploring several of these key approaches.

To download this article, which was published in UMDNJ Research's Fall/Winter Issue,
please follow this link

Drug Resistant Fungicover

By David Perlin, Executive Director of PHRI and Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics at NJMS.

The crisis of antimicrobial drug resistance and the emergence of “superbugs” threaten human health. We hear it all the time. A simple infection that should be easily treated with antibiotics goes so badly awry that a life-threatening situation arises. In an instant, decades of work invested to develop an antibacterial or antiviral agent can be rendered useless through simple genetic selection. As we rely upon antimicrobial agents to aid against infection for a wide array of advanced medical procedures that leave patients highly susceptible to infection, we are in a vulnerable state. The emergence of drug resistance may be the single most important factor that threatens advanced health care delivery and adds hugely to its costs. We know about bacterial and viral infections...but how much is known about invasive fungal infections?

To download this article, which was published in UMDNJ Research's Fall/Winter Issue,
please follow this link

The Quest to Conquer HIV/AIDScover

By Min Lu, Senior Faculty at PHRI and Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics at NJMS.

Conquering HIV/AIDS is clearly the scientific grand challenge of our day. It’s the key to saving millions of lives and ending great suffering everywhere and to stopping widespread personal, political, and economic devastation throughout the developed and the developing world. The challenges to halting the epidemic are many. The crisis in Africa and now Asia has been widely covered, and the dire need for inexpensive drugs, better clinical care, and preventive education is well known. But the ultimate goal remains a vaccine, and perhaps the fiercest battles are being fought in laboratories. A common feature of successful vaccines for other infectious diseases is their ability to rapidly neutralize viruses in newly exposed individuals — before the infection can become established. Inducing neutralizing antibodies will be important for developing a preventative AIDS vaccine.

To download this article, which was published in UMDNJ Research's Fall/Winter Issue,
please follow this link

The PCR Revolution: Basic Technologies and Applications - Inventing Molecular Beaconscover_kramer_2009

By Fred Kramer, Senior Faculty at PHRI and Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics at NJMS, Salvatore Marras, Faculty ar PHRI and Assistant Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics at NJMS and Sanjay Tyagi, Senior Faculty at PHRI and Professor in the Department of Medicine at NJMS.

The invention of molecular beacons followed a rather circuitous route. Fred Kramer and Sanjay Tyagi's laboratory had been studying the remarkable mechanism of replication of the single-stranded genomic RNA of bacteriophage Q-Beta, a virus that infects Escherichia coli. When a few molecules of Q-Beta RNA are incubated in a test tube with the viral RNA-directed RNA polymerase, Q-Beta replicase, millions of copies of each Q-Beta RNA molecule are generated in only a few minutes by exponential amplification, without primers and without thermal cycling. Unfortunately, Q-Beta replicase is so specific for the particular sequences and structures present in Q-Beta RNA, that it ignores almost all other nucleic acid molecules, disappointing those who would use its extraordinary amplification characteristics to generate large amounts of any desired RNA in vitro. However, their laboratory discovered that if a heterologous RNA sequence is inserted into an appropriate site within MDV-1 RNA, which is a naturally occurring small RNA isolated from Q-Beta-infected E. coli that possesses the sequences and structures required for replication, the resulting "recombinant RNA" can be amplified exponentially by incubation with Q-Beta replicase. This discovery enabled the design of recombinant RNAs that contained inserted hybridization probe sequences , which were employed in the earliest real-time exponential amplification assays, and whose use, paradoxically, led to the invention of molecular beacons.

To download this bookchapter, which was published by Cambridge University Press,
please follow this link

Antibiotic Resistance: Understanding and Responding to an Emerging Crisisbookcover0311

Once hailed as ìmagic bullets,î antibiotics are now used so widely that their success is threatening their effectiveness. The natural mutability of microbes is enabling pathogens to develop bulletproof shields that make antibiotic treatments useless. Meanwhile, it has become increasingly difficult to replace failing treatments with newer, more powerful antibiotics. If we fail to address resistance, we may lose control of infectious diseases, reverting back to the dangerous era before penicillin.

Fortunately, new ideas and principles have emerged for slowing the development of antibiotic resistance, both in individual patients and in the human population as a whole. Antibiotic Resistance introduces these crucial ideas to everyone who make decisions about antibiotic use: doctors, medical providers, and healthcare administrators; public health professionals and government regulators; farmers and agricultural providers; and especially, individual patients.

Antibiotic Resistance brings together current and authoritative answers to key questions such as:

- What is resistance, and how does it emerge?
- How do resistance genes move between pathogens, and how are they transmitted?
- How do common human activities promote antibiotic resistance?
- How can we lengthen the effective life span of antibiotic treatments?
- How do we balance risks to individual patients against risks to the human species?
- What do physicians and pharmaceutical companies need to know about setting antibiotic dosages?
- What simple steps can hospitals and other institutions take to prevent the emergence and spread of dangerous pathogens, such as MRSA?
- How can surveillance be used more effectively as the first line of defense against resistance?
- How can we rationalize and accelerate the discovery of new antibiotics?
- What unique resistance challenges are associated with viral influenza, seasonal flu, avian flu, and human flu pandemics?

For more information, please visit the following web site

Antibiotic Resistance: Understanding and Responding to an Emerging Crisis, Rough Cutsbookcover0510

The impact of antibiotic resistance is only beginning to be felt by the general public. But the popular press is beginning to recount horror stories of families colonized by MRSA and manhunts for carriers of XDR tuberculosis. There is no doubt that antibiotic resistance will touch everyone. In Antibiotic Resistance, PHRI scientists Drs. Karl Drlica and David Perlin provide an entry-level description that provides access to infectious diseases in a way that is immediately useful. From this perspective, the potential market is everyone except infectious disease experts who are already familiar with the mutant selection window hypothesis. Within the health care community, the primary readers will be first-year medical students, pharmacy students, veterinary students, and practicing physicians. Some college instructors will find the book well suited for biology specialty courses. As the importance of antibiotic resistance grows, the market will expand to politicians -- everyone has a role in this problem, and everyone needs to contribute to the solution. For more information, please visit the publisher's web site at www.ftpress.com.

Antimicrobial Resistance and Implications for the 21st CenturyCover_DrlicaSV08

Dr. Karl Drlica, a PHRI Principal Investigator, has co-edited a new volume in Springer Verlag’s series “Emerging Infectious Diseases of the 21st Century” entitled “Antimicrobial Resistance and Implications for the 21st Century”. This book serves as a status report on resistance. A set of comprehensive, up-to-date reviews by international experts covers problems being observed among a variety of bacteria (Streptococcus pneumoniae, enteroccoci, staphylococci, Gram-negative bacilli, mycobacteria species), viruses (HIV, herpesviruses), and fungi (Candida species, fusarium, etc.). The chapters explore molecular mechanisms of drug resistance, epidemiology of resistant strains, clinical implications, and future directions, including strategies for restricting the acquisition of resistance. The work is intended for experts and students in the fields of infectious disease, microbiology, and public health.

Please follow this link to download a pdf copy of a review published in the July 2008 issue of Microbe, an American Society for Microbiology publication. To download the Table of Contents, please click here.

Publisher: Springer Verlag (2008).

Please, click here to orde this book through www.amazon.com.

Understanding DNAUnderstanding DNA Cover

A 4th edition of Dr. Karl Drlica's popular classic Understanding DNA and Gene Cloning: A Guide for the Curious has just been published. The book explains the fundamental principles of DNA biology at a level that is understandable by thoses who are not science majors. With DNA and gene cloning all over the news, readers need to understand the ongoing genetic revolution. In this highly acclaimed guide, Karl Drlica fully explains the basic science and technology readers need to understand the issues and make crucial decisions. Each step of the way he explains complex topics using easy-to-understand analogies. The new edition is now completely up-to-date.

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons; 4th edition (July 2003).

Please, click here to order this book through www.amazon.com.

Idiot's GuideIdiot's Guide Cover

Dr. David Perlin, PHRI's Scientific Director, has co-authored (with Ann Cohen) The Complete Idiot's Guide to Dangerous Diseases and Epidemics. In clearly written, straightforward text, the Guide reviews past and recent epidemics, the threat of bioterrorism, and how our bodies fight disease.

A reader reviewer on amazon.com states: "From Anthrax to the West Nile Virus and all forms of common and uncommon diseases in between, Perlin and Cohen present this must-have information in an easy to follow format. They deal clearly with such topics as current and horrifying as bioterrorism as well as the more common yet equally deadly hazards of under-cooked chicken and beef. This book is an excellent source of practical information for families and belongs next to the aspirin and other medical supplies."

Publisher: Alpha Books; 1st edition (June 4, 2002).

Please, click here to orde this book through www.amazon.com.

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