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Full NameProfessor Bryan Markey

Veterinary Pathobiology

University College Dublin

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Research Fields
  • infectious disease and the immune system
  • one health
Postgrad Medical Specialties
  • Veterinary Medicine
Medical Subspecialties
  • Infectious diseases
  • Other
Other Medical Specialties:

Veterinary microbiology

My Work

Over the years I have worked on a wide range of infectious disease projects. My principal research area has been chlamydial abortion of ewes and more recently Johne’s disease of cattle. From 2006 to 2010, I led a large collaborative research project involving national and international collaborators, to investigate the pathogenesis of and to develop novel diagnostics for reproductive loss in sheep due to Toxoplasma gondii and Chlamydia abortus. From 2013-2017 a research project to evaluate recombinant proteins as novel subunit diagnostics and vaccines for Chlamydia abortus was carried out. This project involved applying proteomic techniques to develop improved diagnostics and vaccinogens for enzootic abortion of ewes. I am currently involved in research into viral infections of Nile crocodiles in Zimbabwe and infectious causes of abortion in Irish cattle herds. I work closely with my colleague Assoc Professor Finola Leonard to investigate the incidence and impact of antimicrobial resistant (AMR) bacteria in animals and the impact of colonization on animals and humans in-contact with them.

Potential Projects

Together with my colleague, Assoc Prof Leonard, we manage the UCD Veterinary Diagnostic Microbiology Laboratory, which is an approved training centre of the European College of Veterinary Microbiology. This provides us with access to clinical veterinary isolates and facilitates research into the ever increasing numbers of resistant infections being diagnosed year on year. As part of the University Veterinary Hospital it also allows us to study the factors affecting their occurrence in animals. We are interested in investigating the effects of hospitalisation including antimicrobial treatment, infection control practices and diet on AMR. Areas of particular interest include 1) the use of metagenomic techniques to examine the microbiome and resistome of domestic animals; 2) studies in pigs indicate that factors apart from antimicrobial use, including the age of the host and environmental hygiene, can influence the resistome; 3) there is evidence in dogs that dietary composition may affect the presence of antimicrobial genes in the intestine, high protein diets have being associated with a greater abundance of antimicrobial genes than low protein diets.