The overarching aim of the THOP Research Group is the epidemiology, diagnosis, study of drug-resistance mechanisms, drug discovery and control of tuberculosis, HIV and opportunistic diseases. The group investigates patterns of movement of microorganisms, determinants of virulence and drug resistance in Portugal, across EU and Portuguese-speaking countries, to assess global risks and impact on control programmes. Our holistic and integrated perspective aims to improve precision and personalized medicine for the control of infectious diseases in the era of antibiotic resistance and chronic immunosuppressive diseases.
Our major research objectives are to:
i) collect, manage and process microbiologic samples and genomic data, to access phylogeographic origins, virulence and drug resistance determinants of microbial pathogens from field and clinical sources gathered from indigenous and travellers’ cohorts (tourism and vulnerable populations).
ii) develop affordable and reliable nanotechnology-based devices and methods for the early detection of biomarkers of virulence and drug resistance, using microbiome interactions, whole-genome-sequencing, omics approach, epigenomic analysis and drug design tools.
iii) describe new mechanisms of drug resistance and promote drug discovery.
iv) improve and develop approaches for early and precise detection and monitoring of infection and resistance.
v) provide relevant information to guide therapeutic implementation in a timely and personalized way, improving the success of outcomes.