Human Infectious Diseases

BII's unique combination of research groups from different disciplines (gene expression, protein sequence, protein structure, bioimaging) opens the opportunity to cover a wide range of aspects of collaborative research on infectious diseases that are not easily found under the same roof in other institutes. To coordinate our efforts, we have established a cross-division research programme called the Human Emerging Infectious Diseases Initiative, or HEIDI.

Known for being at the forefront of research during the 2009 (H1N1) pandemic, we are well prepared for coming influenza seasons, new pandemics and challenges of novel infectious agents. We are also involved in the development of new antibiotics to treat eye infections and participate in several other local and international efforts on infectious diseases. Interested clinicians, industry partners, researchers and health authorities are welcome to contact the programme director (Sebastian Maurer-Stroh) for collaborations.

Current main research areas:

  1. Influenza
    • Molecular surveillance of drug resistance, host specificity, virulence, antigenic changes and emerging mutations (in collaboration with NPHL/MOH Singapore, INMEGEN Mexico City, IAL Sao Paulo and WHO CC Melbourne)
      • FluSurver: one-stop influenza mutation analysis for surveillance and research.
      • Our influenza publications.
    • Modelling and simulation of mutations in viral structures
    • Virus-host interaction pathways (in collaboration with Duke-NUS)

  2. Flaviviruses (Dengue and Zika)
    • Structure-guided in silico drug design of dengue protease inhibitors. (in collaboration with Duke-NUS, ETC, Goethe University Frankfurt and University of Ulm)
    • Multiscale Modelling of Dengue Virus Protein Dynamics and Lipid-Protein Interactions (in collaboration with NUS, NTU and Duke-NUS):A*STAR Research news feature, more details.
    • Local Dengue outbreak analysis (in collaboration with EHI/NEA)
    • Singapore Zika outbreak 2016 first genome analysis (in collaboration with NPHL/MOH) and full analysis (islandwide collaboration

  3. Antibacterial drugs
    • Defensin derived antimicrobials with a focus on eye infections (in collaboration with Singapore Eye Research Institute (, NTU, NUS, Singapore General Hospital Pathology)
      • new molecules in pre-clinical testing show activity against clinical strains of Pseudomonas, MRSA and fungus
      • Visit Defensins Knowledgebase
    • Computational antibiotic susceptibility profiles from whole genome data
    • Automated classification of beta-lactamases based on substrate binding pocket similarities (in collaboration with SGH and NPHL/MOH)

  4. Contributions to A*STAR BMRC infectious disease research topics:
    • Influenza vaccine
    • Tuberculosis
    • Malaria
    • Dengue
    • HFMD/EV71

Recent publications: