The miGenomeSurv consortium was initiated by partners from three German institutions:
Alexander Mellmann and Dag Harmsen are researchers with a long-standing interest in genotyping microbes for surveillance purposes from the Medical Faculty of the WWU. Both were involved early-on with the nearly real-time genomic characterization of the German 2011 EHEC outbreak. Together with colleagues from the Oxford University, UK, they are co-inventors of the cgMLST typing method. Since 2013 they have implemented prospective whole genome sequencing of all multi-drug resistant microbes at the University Hospital Münster on a routine basis.
Florian Maurer and Stefan Niemann are co-leading the National Reference Center for Mycobacteria.They are both working on the use of genome sequencing for diagnostics and surveillance of Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex strain and are, together with RKI, implementing the prospective integrated molecular TB surveillance in Germany starting in 2020.
RCB is the Lung Research Center of the Leibniz Association. It investigates diseases associated with civilization such as asthma and allergies as well as lung infections, especially tuberculosis (TB). The overriding goal of the basically interdisciplinary and translational research activities is to elucidate the causes and mechanisms of infectious and non-infectious chronic inflammatory diseases of the lung in order to derive new innovative concepts for their prevention, diagnosis and therapy. It is internationally renowned for its work on the molecular epidemiology, resistance and pathogenesis of TB and the individualized optimization of antibiotic therapy in M/XDR-TB patients. The RCB is the headquarters of the National Reference Centre for Mycobacteria (NRC) and the Supranational Reference Centre of the WHO.
Lothar Wieler, president of the Robert Koch-Institute, Martin Mielke, head of the department for infectious diseases, Antje Flieger, head of the National Reference Center for Salmonella and other enteric bacteria and the Consultant Laboratory of Listeria, and Guido Werner, head of the National Reference Center for Staphylococci and Enterococci are all intensively involved in public health microbiology and molecular surveillance at the national public health institute.
The federal institute RKI is one of the most important establishments safeguarding public health in Germany. As a leading institution in the field of biomedicine, it plays an imperative role in preventing and combating infectious diseases, as well as in the analysis of long-term public health trends amongst the general public. Since its establishment, research on infectious diseases has been a central focus of the RKI, and averting infections one of its classic tasks. For example, scientists look into the molecular properties and transmission modes of all pathogen groups, which include not just bacteria and viruses, but fungi, parasites and even prions like the BSE pathogen. In addition, the RKI monitors and analyzes data about the occurrence of numerous infectious diseases throughout Germany as required by the infection protection act.