McMaster University

McMaster University

Faculty of
Health Sciences

Professor honoured for clinical microbiology contributions

Published: February 13, 2009
Mohamed Karmali
Mohamed Karmali, a professor of pathology and molecular medicine

A McMaster University professor whose groundbreaking discoveries improved understanding and diagnosis across many medical fields has been honoured with a prestigious award from the American Society for Microbiology.

Dr. Mohamed Karmali, a professor of pathology and molecular medicine, has been named the recipient of the 2009 BD Award for Research in Clinical Microbiology. The award recognizes a distinguished scientist for research accomplishments that form the foundation for important applications in clinical microbiology.

In addition to his role at McMaster, Karmali is the director general of Public Health Agency of Canada’s Laboratory for Foodborne Zoonoses and the Office of Biotechnology, Genomics and Population Health. He also is an investigator in the Michael G. DeGroote Institute for Infectious Disease Research at McMaster and an adjunct professor at the University of Guelph.

A fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology, Karmali is honored for his groundbreaking research that has impacted clinical microbiology as well as gastroenterology, nephrology, infectious diseases and epidemiology.

He has published many influential works, including his first in the 1970s on the newly recognized pathogen, Campylobacter jejuni, in childhood enteritis. Subsequently, he reported the development of a laboratory diagnostic process for isolating Campylobacter, known as Karmali’s medium.

In the early 1980s, Karmali identified Shiga toxin-producing E. coli as important human pathogens. This seminal observation dramatically changed the approach to diagnosing gastrointestinal infections worldwide, and to understanding, preventing, and treating the most severe complications of these infections.

Karmali earned his medical degree from the University of Glasgow Medical School and completed specialized training in internal medicine and medical microbiology.

The BD Award for Research in Clinical Microbiology will be presented during the general meeting of the American Society for Microbiology in May.

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