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Member Research and Reports

Member Research and Reports

GW Researcher Uses Genomic Sequencing to Trace History of E. Coli Superbug

Dr. Lance B. Price, professor of environmental and occupational health at the George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services, served as lead author on a study showing that a single strain of E. coli has become the main cause of bacterial infections in women and the elderly by invading the bladder and the kidneys. Dr. Price, who is also an associate professor in the pathogen genomics division of the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen), and his colleagues used whole-genome sequencing to study E. coli samples from patients and animals in five countries over 44 years from 1967 to 2011. They found that today’s epidemic of infections can be traced back to a single strain of E. coli, one that is resistant to many antibiotics.