Extending a hand
CHORI Scientist Offered Competitive Latin American Professorship
The highly competitive program awards one professorship per year that focuses on the transfer of appropriate technologies to developing countries.
“It’s about educational exchange, research exchange, the opportunity to collaborate and to help get a developing country up to speed,” says Dr. Dean.
An expert in chlamydial and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), Dr. Dean plans to look at rates of Chlamydia trachomatis and other STDs in Quito’s at risk populations. They will be screening for chlamydiae and utilizing a new technique they’ve developed for analyzing strain types that provides a better fingerprint of the organism.
“It’s also a way of tracking strains to determine who becomes re-infected and who fails treatment,” says Dr. Dean.
As in many developing countries, the average income in Quito falls into the category of less than $5,000 a year and there are simply very few resources to dedicate toward health care.
As Dr. Dean explains, “They have medical, dental and pharmaceutical schools, but the resources for medical care have to come from the government and they just don’t have it. Screening for chlamydiae just isn’t something they can afford to do.”
Thanks to Dr. Dean’s professorship award through ASM, however, they’ll be able to do just that. In collaboration with her medical and post-doctoral students, Dr. Dean will not only be teaching health professionals in Quito about sexually transmitted diseases and chlamydiae, but will provide essential lab tools and technology, and the training to go with them.
Monday, May 16, 2011 11:33 PM