Viral and Bacterial Infections

Although mortality from infectious disease has declined globally, viral and bacterial infections still disproportionately impact the world's most vulnerable populations. Pneumonia and diarrhoea are major killers in young children while syphilis is the main cause of stillbirth and perinatal mortality. HIV, tuberculosis, and viral hepatitis are among the leading causes of deaths due to infectious disease in adults living in low and middle income countries. Treatment for these devastating diseases exists, but their use and effectiveness face numerous challenges including timely diagnosis, drug resistance and access to healthcare. Sub-Saharan Africa is home to 70% of the world’s people living with HIV and the highest tuberculosis burden in the world. Although treatment has saved many lives, daunting challenges in reaching, diagnosing and treating patients hamper their control.

Multi-resistant bacteria are found in all regions of the world and spread easily, thus constituting one of the most serious threats to global health. In the last decades, emerging infectious diseases, especially those related to emerging viruses such as dengue, chikungunya and Zika, have become an increasingly important area of concern in public health at a global level. The crisis triggered by SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus responsible for COVID-19, has brought the threat of emerging viruses to the forefront at a global level.

Main research lines

At ISGlobal, we use our experience to improve the diagnosis and treatment of viral and bacterial diseases, to understand the causes of antibiotic resistance, and to find novel ways of reaching underserved populations in the following areas:

Our Team


  • Sara Soto
    Sara Soto Associate Research Professor and Head of the Viral and Bacterial Infections Programme at ISGlobal.


  • Jeffrey Lazarus
    Jeffrey Lazarus Associate Research Professor and Co-director of the Viral and Bacterial Infections Programme
  • Jordi Vila
    Jordi Vila Research Professor, Director of the Antimicrobial Resistance Initiative and Co-Director of the Viral and Bacterial Infections Programme

Our Team

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Highlighted Projects


Combatting Bacterial Resistance in Europe - Carbapenem Resistance


Improved case detection through TB contact risk stratification by Xpert results and spatial parameters in Mozambique


Evaluation of the effect of weekly high dose rifapentine and isoniazid (3HP) vs periodic 3HP vs 6H for preventing TB among HIV-positive individuals


Optimizing provider-initiated HIV testing, linkage, and retention in care in the district of Manhiça, Mozambique


Integrating and decentralizing diabetes and hypertension services in Africa

AMR DetecTool, a project funded by EIT Health

AMR DetecTool

A breakthrough device for the rapid detection of antimicrobial resistance


Large Clinical Trial in Africa on the Treatment of Mild Cases of COVID-19



Hepatitis B Virus COMmunity Screening and Vaccination in Africans

Stool4TB logo


Evaluating a new stool based qPCR for diagnosis of tuberculosis in children and people living with HIV

Hep C Free Baleares

Eliminating hepatitis C on the Balearic Islands (Mallorca, Menorca and Ibiza): a study in governmental and non-governmental addiction service centres, a mobile methadone unit and a prison to test and link people who use drugs to HCV care.

Healthcare Unit in a Mozambican hospital


Close the Gap, Increase Access, Provide Adequate Therapy

STREESCO project


Strengthening Epidemiological Surveillance in Benin and Burkina Faso for an Effective Response to COVID-19

COVAIR-CAT project logo


Air Pollution in Relation to COVID-19 Morbidity and Mortality: A Large Population-Based Cohort Study in Catalonia

END-VOC project logo


ENDing COVID-19 Variants Of concern through Cohort studies (END-VOC)

Other projects

See Past Projects


Viral Hepatitis COMmunity Screening, Vaccination, and Care


Combating Bacterial Resistance In Europe


Searching the hidden: evaluating dengue, chikungunya and Zika autochthonous transmission in the city of Barcelona.


Eficacia de hidroxicloroquina en la prevención de la infección por SARS-CoV-2 y de la gravedad de la enfermedad de COVID-19 durante el embarazo


Reconnecting Transmission to Global Tuberculosis Control by Mapping Pathogen Transmission Events to Host Infection Status


Community knowledge generation through scientific culture, urban ecology and art