Dr Fiona Cresswell
MBChB BSc MRCP DTMH PGCert Epi
Wellcome Trust Clinical PhD Fellow in Global Health
I am a clinical PhD fellow with a clinical and academic interest in HIV, particularly the prevention and management of advanced HIV disease. I'm keen to investigate whether novel approaches to HIV treatment, such as injectable antiretroviral therapy, can improve outcomes from HIV in sub-Saharan Africa.
I began my clinical PhD in 2017 and am based in Uganda, supervised by Prof Alison Elliott. The focus of my PhD research is improving diagnosis and treatment of HIV-associated TB meningitis. I have been investigating the pharmacokinetics and safety of high dose rifampicin for TB meningitis. I have also been exploring diagnostics for extrapulmonary TB including Xpert MTB/Rif "Ultra" and TB-LAM on cerebrospinal fluid and urine.
As a clinician i do ward rounds on the Infectious Diseases ward at Mulago Hospital and also see outpatients in the Infectious Diseases Institute clinic, which has an HIV cohort of ~8,000 adults.
I have had the pleasure of being a tutor on the East African Diploma in Tropical Medicine and Hygeine since its inception in 2011. I do ward-based teaching with undergraduate medical students from Makerere University, Uganda.
My research projects include:
- Diagnostics: I am collaborating with neurologists at the University of California San Francisco who are using next generation sequencing technologies to better understand the aetiology of brain infections in advanced HIV disease. We have also recently investigated FujiLAM in TB meningitis.
- HIV treatment: I am keen to investigate long-acting injectable antiretroviral therapy in stable HIV and in unstable populations in sub-Saharan Africa.
- TB meningitis treatment: As part of a collaboration with researchers in Indonesia, South Africa, Uganda, Netherlands and USA we are investigating higher dose of rifampicin through a phase III trial (Harvest).
- Transmission of HIV and STIs: I have been involved in molecular epidemiological studies of gonorrhoea transmission using whole genome sequencing. I am the chair of the writing group of the national HIV post exposure prophylaxis guidelines and more recently conducted a systematic review on HIV transmission of HIV through biting and spitting incidents.