Seminar #2

HIV Drug Resistance Testing Workshop

National Priority Programs, National Health Laboratory Service, South Africa

No invitations necessary; open to all conference registrants

Saturday, 3 December
CTICC room location: 2.41-2.43

Medical Technologists, Scientists, Diagnostic Suppliers, Pathologists, Clinicians, Health Care workers.

The interest in HIV drug resistance testing for surveillance, clinical management and research in resource-limited settings is increasing. This workshop will have a technical, clinical and surveillance component in order to target a wide audience.

The principles of drug resistance will be discussed followed by the technical component of HIV drug resistance testing, from setting up a molecular laboratory to the principles of HIV drug resistance assays and sequence analysis. Discussions will include the necessity of having specific laboratory workflow, required equipment, the application of good clinical laboratory practice in an HIV drug resistance laboratory and specific technologies such as Sanger sequencing and Next generation sequencing.

Finally, sequencing data analysis, quality controls, the use of drug resistance prediction algorithms and the consequent interpretation of results will be presented. The technical module will be followed by a clinical module, focusing on local and international testing guidelines, the clinical interpretation of HIV drug resistance results and some case studies.Finally we will discuss what HIV drug resistance means at a public health level, present some of the survey findings in the region and how these results should be interpreted by health care workers.


  1. To gain overall knowledge of HIV drug resistance on a technical, clinical and public health level.
    To understand the technical and logistical merits of sequencing and its application to HIV-1 drug resistance testing.
  2. To understand the importance of laboratory workflow, equipment and application of Good Clinical Laboratory Practice within a high quality HIV Resistance Testing Laboratory.
  3. To acquire knowledge in sequencing data analysis, quality control and the use of drug-resistance prediction algorithms.
  4. To understand consequent interpretation of results of HIV resistance tests in a clinical setting.
  5. To understand what HIV drug resistance means at a public health level and how to translate these findings to health care workers.


Dr Kim Steegan, National Priority Programs, National Health Laboratory Service
Dr Kim Steegen has a PhD in Bio-medical sciences from Ghent University, Belgium.  She is currently employed by Wits Health Consortium as a senior scientist and has been managing the National Health Laboratory Services (NHLS) HIV drug resistance laboratory in Johannesburg since 2011. She has a background in molecular research and diagnostics with a main focus on HIV drug resistance testing both for individual patient management and public health through surveillance. She has been instrumental in capacitating three NHLS laboratories for HIV drug resistance testing and is currently the co-chair of the NHLS HIV drug resistance committee.

Dr Sergio Carmona, National Priority Programs, National Health Laboratory Service
Dr Sergio Carmona received his Medical degree from the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg. He is in-charged of one of the largest routine HIV virology laboratories in the region, providing Early Infant Diagnosis, viral load monitoring, HIV drug resistance testing. He also has a wider interest in HIV-related public health, and has conducted research to support this, such as a national sentinel site HIV drug resistance survey and ongoing work on the monitoring and evaluation of the comprehensive care, management and treatment HIV program in South Africa.

Dr Michelle Moorhouse, Wits RHI, University of the Witwatersrand
Dr Michelle Moorhouse graduated from Wits University in South Africa. She currently works at Wits RHI, where she is actively engaged in clinical work, research and teaching, as well as sitting on National guideline committees, the National Third Line ART Committee and the National HIV Drug Resistance Strategy Steering Committee. She was recently appointed to Primary Health Care Level Expert Review Committee of the National Essential Medicines List Committee. Michelle holds an Honorary Consultancy at the Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital as well as a joint appointment as a researcher in the Faculty of Health Sciences of the University of the Witwatersrand. She is a member of the  Board of Directors of the SAHIVCS and the Editorial Board of HIV Nursing Matters. In July 2015, Michelle took over as Editor-in-Chief of the SA Journal of HIV Medicine.

Dr Matilu Mwau, Kenya Medical Research Institute
Dr Mwau is an Infectious Diseases specialist working at the Kenya Medical Research Institute. He consults for a wide variety of governmental and non-governmental organizations locally and internationally in infectious diseases and in laboratory systems strengthening. His current research interests focus on HIV drug resistance, novel diagnostic approaches, arbovirology, placental malaria, HIV Immunology, and hepatitis. He is currently mentoring 6 Master degree and 2 doctorate students at local universities. Dr Mwau holds a Medical degree from the University of Nairobi, a Master’s degree in Tropical Medicine from Nagasaki University in Japan and a Doctorate in Molecular Medicine from Oxford University, Trinity College.  He has been the Director, Centre for Infectious and Parasitic Diseases Control Research, since 2008.

Dr Gillian Hunt, Center for HIV and STI, National Institute for Communicable Diseases
Dr Gillian Hunt is senior research scientist in the Center for HIV and STI at the National Institute for Communicable Diseases. Dr. Hunt received her PhD in Virology from the University of the Witwatersrand in 2003, and has been working in the field of HIV since 1996. The Drug Resistance Surveillance Laboratory is accredited by the World Health Organization as Regional Drug Resistance Testing Laboratory and performs surveillance testing for South African and neighboring countries. In addition, the laboratory is involved in clinical research projects and assay development activities.