Dr Umer Chaudhry

Research Fellow

I have earned a bachelor degree (DVM) in Veterinary Medicine in 2005. Since then, I pursue an MSc in Parasitology, MSc in Molecular Biology, and MSc in Biomedicine from Sweden. I did my PhD in the field of Molecular Parasitology from the School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Calgary, Canada. Since defending my thesis in May 2015, I have been working at the School of Veterinary Studies, University of Edinburgh and the School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Surrey. I started to learn these molecular techniques during my PhD to study the origin of anthelmintic resistance mutations and have continued to develop a wide range of skills throughout my postdoctoral career.

During my highly competitive BBSRC-sLoLa postdoctoral fellowship, I have expanded my research into the arena of global food security and production animal health to tackle the major anthelmintic resistance challenges in ruminant nematodes. During my current highly competitive One Health EJP Horizon 2020 research fellowship, I am working on the domain of foodborne zoonosis and emerging threats of protozoa in humans and animals.

I have led research projects to study parasite epidemiology and antiparasitic drug resistance in humans and animals. I have developed high-throughput platforms for speciation and early resistance detection. The data offer a powerful tool for screening a large number of field samples, with implications for the broader development of molecular diagnostics. I am studying the genetic epidemiology of antiparasitic drug resistance mutations, regarding the effect of selection pressures, fitness cost and gene flow on their emergence and spread. The data allow a comprehensive analysis of the loci in the development of drug resistance. I have increased my knowledge of parasite epidemiology regarding the multiplicity of infection, a current significant knowledge gap. This will enable a better understanding of host-parasite relationships, influences of vectors and or intermediate hosts, host management and climate change on the disease epidemiology. I have an advanced understanding of the population genetics of parasite antigens that can inform vaccine development, capable of providing cross-protection against different host-derived parasites variants.