Development of a point-of-care molecular diagnostic tool for malaria and schistosomiasis in low-resource settings

Garrett, Alice Catherine (2021) Development of a point-of-care molecular diagnostic tool for malaria and schistosomiasis in low-resource settings. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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There is an imminent need for more sensitive and low-cost point-of-care diagnostics for low-resource settings. Molecular diagnostics are becoming increasingly relevant in global efforts for disease elimination, although, healthcare workers face practical and logistical problems in the implementation of such tests in low-resource laboratories and environments. This has propelled the development of tailored point-of-care (POC) molecular diagnostic tests, however, to date there is lack of investigations into POC molecular tests trialled in low-resource settings.

The World Health Organization (WHO) have highlighted the importance of the elimination of malaria and schistosomiasis in the 2030 roadmap to achieve sustainable development goals. Work previously conducted within the Biomedical Research Division at The University of Glasgow resulted in the development of a low-cost POC molecular diagnostic platform for malaria. The technique is reliant on loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP). This thesis describes the adaptation of the technique to aid the diagnosis of schistosomiasis. Furthermore, field-trials were undertaken in collaboration with the Vector Control Division in Uganda, to assess the logistics and feasibility of POC LAMP to detect plasmodium and schistosome DNA in rural low-resource-settings.

Molecular detection of malaria and schistosomiasis has the potential to provide more sensitive diagnostic tests which will benefit current surveillance programs and epidemiological studies. Additionally, the assessment of field trials will assist those developing POC molecular tests for use in low-resource environments out-with clinical and laboratory settings. Due to the malleability of the technique, this could further benefit additional POC testing and disease surveillance studies in-the-field, thus, contributing to the development of future work in these areas.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Colleges/Schools: College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering > Biomedical Engineering
Supervisor's Name: Cooper, Professor Jon and Reboud, Dr. Julien
Date of Award: 2021
Depositing User: Theses Team
Unique ID: glathesis:2021-82700
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 15 Feb 2022 12:25
Last Modified: 25 Nov 2022 09:05
Thesis DOI: 10.5525/gla.thesis.82700
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