Mycobacteria/Nocardia Lab supervisor reappointed to journal’s editorial board; lab reaccredited

Friday, February 18, 2011

Barbara Brown-Elliott, research assistant professor of microbiology and supervisor of the Mycobacteria/Nocardia Laboratory at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Tyler, has been reappointed to the editorial board of Clinical Microbiology Reviews (CMR).

Ms. Brown-Elliott recently was reappointed to a two-year term on the editorial board of the CMR, a journal published by the American Society of Microbiology. Clinical microbiology is the study of germs – bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites that cause human illness – and their role in disease.

She also has been named a full member of the Clinical and Laboratory Standards Subcommittee on Antimycobacterial Susceptibility Testing. Ms. Brown-Elliott, who joined UTHSCT in 1988, has been an advisor to the committee since 1997.

The subcommittee sets international laboratory standards for the testing of mycobacteria – microbes that cause diseases such as tuberculosis and other infections – and Nocardia – bacteria found in soil that can cause infections – to see if these germs are susceptible to specific antibiotics. Individuals with weakened immune systems or who have chronic lung disease often have a higher risk of getting mycobacterial or Nocardia infections.

In addition, the Mycobacteria/Nocardia Lab supervised by Ms. Brown-Elliott and directed by Richard Wallace, MD, recently was re-accredited for another two years.

A team of inspectors from the accrediting arm of the College of American Pathologists (CAP) gave the lab a perfect score during the routine inspection, which is conducted every two years. They examined the lab’s records, including staff qualifications, equipment and lab testing procedures, safety, quality issues and overall management.

The more than 17,000 members of CAP represent board-certified pathologists and pathologists-in-training worldwide. More than 6,000 laboratories are accredited by CAP, and approximately 23,000 laboratories are enrolled in CAP’s proficiency testing programs.

For 60 years, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Tyler has provided excellent patient care and cutting-edge treatment, specializing in pulmonary disease, cancer, heart disease, primary care, and the disciplines that support them. UTHSCT’s annual operating budget of $125 million represents a major economic impact of over $287 million to the Northeast Texas region. In FY 2010, scientists in the Center for Biomedical Research were awarded 75 competitive grants and contracts totaling more than $14 million. As the academic medical center for Northeast Texas, its graduate medical education program – with residencies in family medicine and occupational medicine – provide doctors for many communities throughout the region and beyond.

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