Dr. Ali’s Research

Dr. Ali’s work focuses on cholera, a secretory profuse diarrheal disease and its causative agent, toxigenic strains of V. cholerae. Cholera is an ancient disease that has caused seventh pandemics since recorded history in 1817 and the disease is still a major public health threat in countries lacking safe drinking water, optimal sanitation, and hygiene. V. cholerae is ubiquitous to aquatic environment and humans get the disease upon consumption of water/food contaminated with the pathogen.

Cholera has exacerbated recently in poor countries due primarily to factors: natural and man-made disasters, including climate change, mass migration, and wars. My laboratory primarily focuses the roles of environmental factors promoting cholera transmission, environmental persistence and evolution of the pathogens driven by human gut and environmental reservoirs-associated cues/factors.

To address cholera mitigation and potential elimination of the disease from globe, my laboratory actively engaged in fieldwork (environmental survey for V. cholerae in Haiti and in Africa), microbiologic, phylogeographic, epidemiologic, ecologic, and evolutionary dynamics of toxigenic V. cholerae. In addition, I transfer technologies to cholera affected countries by providing educational, infrastructures, material support through collaborative approach.

In summary, my goal is to eliminate/mitigate cholera globally using state of the Art innovative technologies, including mass vaccination, phage therapy, water treatment, sanitation, and hygiene improvement (WASH). I also plan to incorporate AI in preemptively predicting cholera emergence/reemergence to mitigate the burden of the disease.

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