Member highlight: The Zoonotic TB Sub-Section *

Tuberculosis (TB) is an infectious, contagious disease caused by mycobacteria. Different species of mycobacteria have complex cross-infection patterns between domestic animals, wildlife species and humans.

The Union’s Zoonotic TB Sub-Section is a global network of physicians, veterinarians, researchers, economists and social anthropologists working to understand the dynamics of zoonotic TB and create global awareness.

The human-animal interface has become a frontier of keen interest to a wide range of stakeholders, including The Union, who seek to understand host-pathogen interactions, especially in resource-limited settings.

Veterinarian Dr Alejandro Perera of Mexico studies bovine tuberculosis (M bovis), which brings both public health risks and economic losses from inspection and carcass condemnation to culling and farmer compensation.

Dr Perera has also participated in diagnosis and prevention research through a US-Mexico effort to create a bovine TB serum bank used to develop and validate new diagnostic tools.

Dr Adrian Muwonge is a Ugandan molecular epidemiologist working with the Roslin institute to understand the spread, diagnostics and evolution of the M tuberculosis complex at the animal-human-animal interface.

In addition to cattle and domestic livestock, bovine TB affects wild animals. US-based Dr Francisco Olea-Popelka has been involved in efforts to understand and control TB at the cattle-badger interface in Ireland.

Wild animals, such as lions, can get TB from eating infected prey. This lion is being tested using a bronchial wash to detect mycobacteria infection.

Even elephants get TB, usually the same type that affects humans: M tuberculosis. If you are interested in these issues, you are welcome to join The Union’s Zoonotic TB Sub-Section.

Scientific Sections and Working Groups

The Union's scientific sections and working groups offer members an opportunity to affiliate with others who share the same interests and collaborate on research, publications and projects. One of their principal activities is to propose sessions and contribute to the planning of The Union World Conference on Lung Health, the largest annual conference focusing on lung health issues as they affect low- and middle income populations. They also participate in the governance of The Union through the General Assembly.

Read about the highlights from the work of The Union's scientific sections and working groups.


Scientific Sections

As a member, you will choose one of the following sections and sub-sections (optional) to affiliate with:

  • Tuberculosis Section
  • Tobacco Control Section
    • Nurses & Allied Professionals Sub-Section
  • Adult and Child Lung Health Section (consists of adult and child lung health, including childhood TB)
    • Nurses & Allied Professionals Sub-Section
  • HIV Section
    • Nurses & Allied Professionals Sub-Section

Working Groups

As a section member, you will also be invited to join up to three working groups. Current working groups include:

  • TB, HIV and Tobacco
  • TB and mental health
  • TB control in prisons
  • TB and migration
  • TB infection control
  • TB education and training
  • Global Indigeneous Stop TB Initiative
  • Protecting children from tobacco industry interference in health policy
  • Post- TB lung Disorders
  • Creating global awareness of zoonotic TB
  • Asthma managment in low- and middle-income countries
  • Maternal-child TB   
  • Air pollution and lung health
  • Drug-resistant TB
  • Tuberculosis and ethics
  • MPOWER in research group in tobacco control

To find out more about sections, sub-sections and working groups and how to get involved, please contact us.