Anne Kvistholm Jensen

PhD Student: MD Anne Kvistholm Jensen

Project title: Listeriosis in Danmark

Main supervisor: Professor, consultant, dr.med Michael Kemp, Department of Clinical Microbiology, Odense University Hospital

Project supervisor: Head of unit, senior scientist, PhD Eva Møller Nielsen, Microbiology and Infection control, Head of unit, senior scientist, PhD Steen Ethelberg, Infectious Disease Epidemiology, Statens Serum Institut

Additional supervisor: Associate professor, PhD Birgitte Kallipolitis, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Southern Denmark:

Project description:
Listeriosis is a foodborne disease caused by Listeria monocytogenes that can cause bacteremia or meningitis especially in the immunocompromised and the elderly. The mortality is approximately 25 %. Furthermore pregnant women can be infected with abortion/stillbirth or serious illness of the newborn as the outcome. The incidence of Listeriosis in Denmark is generally high (ca. 0.9/100,000) and has been increasing the last decade. This PhD-project will illuminate factors of importance for the acquisition and the manifestation of the disease and seek to identify causes to the observed increase by methods of epidemiology and molecular biology. A register-based case-control study is planned to examine the correlation between the use of different medical drugs and infection with L. monocytogenes and identify risk factors for disease. The DNA of the bacterial isolates will be characterized. Methods will be PFGE (Pulsed Field Gel Electrophoresis) and NGS (Next Generation Sequencing). It will be examine if there can be identified a correlation between the genetic profile of the bacterial isolates and the increasing incidence and the clinical course of the disease.