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Microbiology Australia Microbiology Australia
Issue 1

Vertical Transmission, March 2007

The start of the new year brings with it the promise of new challenges, new experiences and new friendships. This is true not only for our members personally but also for the Australian Society for Microbiology (ASM). Our challenge is to attract new members, to reach those with an interest in microbiology both academic and diagnostic, to meet the increasing needs of our existing members, to foster new relationships with other societies both national and international, to work with the Federation of Australian Scientific and Technological Societ...

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From the Editors, March 2007

To all our Microbiology Australia readers, we would like to wish you all the best for 2007. We hope this year offers exciting discoveries and interactions in the world of microbiology.

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Laboratory issues in STD diagnosis and their application to disease control in an Australian context

This issue of Microbiology Australia features a selection of articles on novel and pragmatic contributions from Australian clinical laboratories to the diagnosis, management and control of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).

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Neisseria gonorrhoeae NAAT ? a problem down under

Nucleic acid amplification tests (NAATs) are used worldwide for the detection of Neisseria gonorrhoeae, either in conjunction with or in place of traditional bacterial culture techniques. There are numerous advantages of gonococcal NAATs, including increased sensitivity, that a viable organism is not needed for detection, and they can be used effectively on non-invasive specimens such as urine and self-collected specimens. For these reasons, NAATs have been particularly useful for patients in remote regions of Australia where sexual health serv...

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Diagnosis of Chlamydia trachomatis using self-collected non-invasive specimens ? the Australian experience

Chlamydia trachomatis are small, non-motile, obligate intracellular bacteria that typically infect human eukaryotic columnar epithelial cells. C. trachomatis infections result in a number of diseases of worldwide public health concern, including trachoma, lymphogranuloma venereum (LGV) and urogenital infections. Chlamydia is the most common sexually transmitted bacterial pathogen worldwide and in Australia has exhibited a steady rise in prevalence 1. National notification rates of newly diagnosed chlamydia infections have increased nearly four-...

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HPV DNA detection: clinical applications

With the licensure and recent agreement by the Commonwealth Government to fund the prophylactic HPV vaccine [Gardasil], preventative against cervical cancer and for females aged 12 to 26 from 2007, as well as the recent NHMRC guidelines on management of abnormal Papanicolaou (Pap) smears recommending HPV DNA assays as a tool in the management post ablation for high-grade dysplasia, a good knowledge base by the medical profession, clinicians, scientists and the lay public will be critical to ensuring appropriate uptake of the vaccine and appropr...

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Problems in diagnosing sexually transmitted infections in remote Australia

Times are changing. The National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Sexual Health and Blood Borne Virus Strategy 2005-2008 provides current commentary on the problems facing Australia?s Indigenous population. While the rates of sexually transmitted infections have always been higher in Indigenous Australians, there is some evidence of increasing rates of HIV infection. The rate of Chlamydia infection in non-Indigenous Australians has doubled between 1999 and 2003, while the rate of infection in some populations of Indigenous Australians has ...

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Sexual transmission of hepatitis viruses

Hepatitis viruses are often not perceived as sexually transmitteddiseases, but sex is an extremely important mode of transmission worldwide for hepatitis B, and it plays a significant role for hepatitis C, hepatitis A and hepatitis D.

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Donovanosis ? hope after years of despair

Donovanosis (granuloma inguinale) is an indolent genital ulcerative disease (GUD). After years of neglect and despair,the recent introduction of a molecular diagnostic test and an effective convenient therapy (azithromycin) have helped to control this disease in Indigenous Australian communities.

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A Century of syphilis serology

The year 2006 represented the centenary of the first diagnostic serological test, the Wasserman complement fixation test for the diagnosis of syphilis. In this article I will relate some developments I have observed in the day-to-day running of a diagnostic serology laboratory over the thirty years preceding this centenary. I have assumed some background knowledge and elected to discuss only selected aspects of serological tests for syphilis (STS), rather than attempt a comprehensive review of the subject. A number of areas such as the serologi...

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The role of antimicrobial resistance monitoring in Neisseria gonorrhoeae

Treatment regimens for most sexually transmitted diseases of bacterial origin are well established. For example, treatment of infections with Chlamydia trachomatis is usually now with macrolides, and Treponema pallidum is still reliably susceptible to penicillins. However, antibiotic treatment for gonorrhoea is more complicated because of the propensity of the gonococcus to develop antimicrobial resistance (AMR), so that standard treatment protocols for gonorrhoea require regular review. Additionally, treatment for gonorrhoea is usually by mean...

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ASM Affairs, March 2007

Clinical Serology and Molecular SIG; The Fellowship Road Map; Team leadership in laboratory management environment; Standing Committee on Clinical Microbiology; Education SIG; Awards and prizes for ASM members

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