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Professor Digby Warner BCom BSc(Hons) PhD (WITS)

MRC/NHLS/UCT Molecular Mycobacteriology Research Unit (MMRU) constituting the UCT node of the DST/NRF Centre of Excellence for Biomedical TB Research (CBTBR)

Digby Warner

Division of Medical Microbiology, Department of Pathology

Member, Institute of Infectious Disease and Molecular Medicine (IDM), Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Cape Town

Research in the MMRU is focused on aspects of mycobacterial physiology and metabolism that are of relevance to new tuberculosis (TB) drug discovery, drug resistance and, more recently, TB transmission.

The Unit currently comprises senior scientists, post-doctoral fellows, and PhD and MSc students, and is supported by grants from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation under the TB Drug Accelerator programme, the Strategic Health Innovation Partnerships (SHIP) initiative of the South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC), the National Institutes of Health (NIH) USA, the National Research Foundation (NRF) of South Africa, and the Research Council of Norway. As a Unit that receives funding through two major grants from the South African government, research capacity development forms a key focus of the laboratory's work.

KEY EXPERTISE: Molecular mycobacteriology and imaging; mycobacterial physiology, in particular the mechanisms and regulation of DNA repair and replication in Mycobacterium tuberculosis and their role in the emergence of drug resistance, the physiological consequences of drug resistance, and the role of vitamin B12 and related co-factors in mycobacterial pathogenesis.


Selected publications:

Masuku B, Mkhwanazi N, Young E, Koch A, Warner DF. (2018) Beyond the lab: Eh!woza and knowing tuberculosis. Med Humanit. 44:285-292.

Moosa A, Lamprecht DA, Arora K, Barry CE 3rd, Boshoff HIM, Ioerger TR, Steyn AJC, Mizrahi V, Warner DF. (2017) Susceptibility of Mycobacterium tuberculosis cytochrome bd oxidase mutants to compounds targeting the terminal respiratory oxidase, cytochrome c. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. doi: 10.1128/AAC.01338-17

Wood R, Morrow C, Barry CE 3rd, Bryden WA, Call CJ, Hickey AJ, Rodes CE, Scriba TJ, Blackburn J, Issarow C, Mulder N, Woodward J, Moosa A, Singh V, Mizrahi V, Warner DF. (2016) Real-time investigation of tuberculosis transmission: developing the respiratory aerosol sampling chamber (RASC). PLOS ONE 11:e0146658. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0146658.

Warner DF, Mizrahi V. (2014) Translation of genomics research into control of tuberculosis: lessons learned and future prospects. Genome Biol. doi:10.1186/s13059-014-0514-z

Warner DF. (2014) Mycobacterium tuberculosis metabolism. Cold Spring Harb Perspect Med. doi:10.1101/cshperspect.a021121

Gopinath K., Venclovas Č., Ioerger T.R., Sacchettini J.C., McKinney J.D., Mizrahi V., Warner D.F. (2013) A vitamin B12transporter in Mycobacterium tuberculosisOpen Biol. 3:120175.


Contact details:

Room 3.03.3, Wolfson Pavilion
Institute of Infectious Disease and Molecular Medicine
UCT Faculty of Health Sciences
Anzio Road, Observatory 7925
South Africa

Tel:  +27 21 406 6556
Email: Digby.Warner@uct.ac.za

Alternate sites: www.mrc.ac.za/mycobacteriology/mycobacteriology.htm



Group members:

Dr. Sophia Gessner, Post-doctoral fellow

Dr Charles Omollo, Post-doctoral fellow

Mr Kojo Acquah, PhD (Chemistry) student (co-supervisor)

Mr Timothy De Wet, PhD (Medical Microbiology) student

Mr Ryan Dinkele, PhD (Medical Microbiology) student

Ms Irene Gobe, PhD (Medical Microbiology) student

Mr Terry Kipkorir, PhD (Medical Microbiology) student

Ms Amanda Mabhula, PhD (Chemistry) student (co-supervised)

Ms Zela Martin, PhD (Medical Microbiology) student

Ms Bianca Masuku, PhD (Medical Microbiology) student

Mr Rendani Mbau, PhD (Medical Microbiology) student

Ms Atondaho Ramudzuli, MSc(Med) student

Mr Lucas Raphela, MSc(Med) student

Ms Caitlin Taylor, PhD (Medical Microbiology) student

Ms Kristy Winkler, MSc(Med) student



Prof. Clifton E. Barry III & Dr. Helena Boshoff, NIAID, NIH, USA

Prof. Kelly Chibale & Dr. Vinayak Singh, H3D, UCT, South Africa

Dr. Christoph Huwe, Bayer AG, Germany

Dr. Meindert Lamers, Leiden University, Netherlands

Prof. John D. McKinney, EPFL, Lausanne, Switzerland

Prof. Rolf Müller & Dr. Jennifer Hermann, Helmholtz Institute for Pharmaceutical Sciences, Germany

Dr. Simon Teague, King’s College London, UK

Prof. Česlovas Venclovas, Institute of Biotechnology, Vilnius University, Lithuania

Prof. Lubbe Wiesner, Clinical Pharmacology, UCT

Dr. Roger Woodgate, NICHD, NIH, USA

Prof. Paul Wyatt & Dr. Simon Green, University of Dundee, UK