Research Department of Microbiology and Nosocomial Infections

 

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Prof. Elena Barantsevich, MD, DSc
Head of Department

Major objectives

  • Antimicrobial resistance of nosocomial pathogens (fungi, bacteria)
  • Epidemiology and molecular epidemiology of microorganisms found at extreme latitudes
  • Epidemiology and molecular epidemiology of resistant microorganisms causing healthcare-associated infections
  • Molecular and genetic studies of microbial phylogeny and antimicrobial resistance genes
  • Study of the microbiota in various biotopes

Key achievements and results

The results of the research carried out by the department made it possible to:

  • Determine the prevalence of resistance of microorganisms causing nosocomial infections in St. Petersburg and Leningrad region.
  • Reveal the increased incidence of carbapenem resistance in Enterobacteriaceae microorganisms; to establish the molecular profile of strains common in St. Petersburg.

The most common genes among carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae in St. Petersburg are NDM-1 and OXA-48, which is not a typical pattern observed in the world practice. An epidemiological study of the spread of resistant strains by validated methods, as well as the molecular genetic test systems developed by ours specialists have made it possible to improve the empirical and etiotropic therapy for nosocomial infections.

Data were obtained on the similarity of the microbial composition of soils at Arctic and Antarctic latitudes, with the superdominance of Geomyces pannorum and Thelebolus microsporus in control soils, and the appearance of Trichoderma spp., Penicillium spp. and Ulocladium spp. in anthropogenically polluted soils. The species composition of secondary aquatic (terrigenous) fungi in the area of the Northern Sea Route was determined.

Training and education

2015 — 2016       Participation in WHO educational programs on antimicrobial resistance and the WHO/Europe's mission to Armenia.

2015 — today   Lectures for Almazov Centre specialists on the diagnosis, therapy and prevention of nosocomial infections.

2019 — today   Lectures and practical workshops in medical microbiology for students of the Medical Education Institute

State Assignments

State Assignment of the Russian Health Ministry on the topic “Development of a test system for detecting methicillin resistance genes and assessing their distribution among various types of staphylococci, causative agents of nosocomial infections” (2018—2020), supervised by E.P. Barnatsevich.

Major national and international projects

The specialists of the department are involved in a large-scale project to study the anthropogenic load on the Arctic and Antarctic regions, analyzing and comparing the composition of microbiological samples in the areas of the Arctic and Antarctic polar stations. In the study of the microbiota, data were obtained on the similarity of the microbial composition of soils at Arctic and Antarctic latitudes, with the superdominance of Geomyces pannorum and Thelebolus microsporus in the control soils, and the appearance of Trichoderma spp., Penicillium spp. and Ulocladium spp. in anthropogenically polluted soils. The species composition of secondary aquatic (terrigenous) fungi in the area of the Northern Sea Route was determined.

Thus, anthropogenic impact leads to changes in the species composition, structure, and other characteristics of microbiota in the air and soils of the Arctic territories and can serve as one of the indicators of ecosystem disturbance in extreme latitudes.

Contacts:
Prof. Elena Barantsevich, Head of Department
E-mail: barantsevich_ep@almazovcentre.ru