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Monica Parker, Ph.D.

  • Monica Parker, Ph.D.

    Monica Parker, Ph.D.

    • Director of the Bloodborne Viruses Laboratory
    • Faculty, Wadsworth Center School of Laboratory Sciences

    • Ph.D. University at Albany School of Public Health (1997)
    • Postdoctoral training: New York State Department of Health, Wadsworth Center

    monica.parker@health.ny.gov
    (518) 474-2163

  • Analysis resulting in redesigned algorithms allows for earlier and more accurate detection of HIV infection.
    A goal of the Wadsworth Center’s Bloodborne Viruses Laboratory is to improve diagnosis of HIV infection. The laboratory conducted an extensive analysis of test results obtained using a variety of HIV test methods in order to compare the performance of different HIV testing strategies. The results are being used to redesign the algorithms recommended for HIV diagnostic testing which will allow for earlier and more accurate detection of HIV infection.

Research Interests

The Bloodborne Viruses Laboratory serves as the state public health reference laboratory for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV) testing. Dr. Parker's lab performs a wide range of serological and molecular methods to confirm HIV and HCV infection. The laboratory's referral testing services include confirmation of HIV infection following rapid test screening at one of the New York State Department of Health Anonymous Counseling and Testing sitesor a number of other clinics and community organizations statewide. Activities include the Pediatric HIV Testing Service which provides testing to definitively confirm or exclude HIV infection for all infants born to HIV-infected women in New York State. The Bloodborne Viruses Laboratory also works closely with epidemiologists on outbreak investigations involving bloodborne viruses, particularly those involving healthcare facilities. The lab employs a number of viral genotyping and sequence analysis techniques to help identify the source of infections under investigation and assess the risk to the public.

Dr. Parker's research interests complement these public health laboratory activities and provide data for clinical guidelines and surveillance programs. A major focus of our research is the development of new methods and strategies for improving diagnosis and clinical management of HIV and HCV infections, especially development of methods which are not commercially available. An important area of the team's research involves the optimization of testing strategies for early detection of HIV infection in both the pediatric and adult population. The lab has a strong interest in genetic variation of bloodborne viruses, and have conducted a number of studies to characterize drug resistant and atypical virus strains circulating in the population.

Select Publications

Wesolowski LG, Wroblewski K, Bennett SB, Parker MM, Hagan C, Ethridge SF, Rhodes J, Sullivan TJ, Ignacio-Hernando I, Werner BG, Owen SM.
Nucleic acid testing by public health referral laboratories for public health laboratories using the U.S. HIV diagnostic testing algorithm.
Clinical Virology.
(2015)
(65):
6-10.
Styer LM, Miller TT, Parker MM.
Validation and clinical use of a sensitive HIV-2 viral load assay that uses a whole virus internal control.
Journal of Clinical Virology.
(2013)
58
(suppl 1):
E127-E133.
Sullivan TJ, Antonio-Gaddy MS, Richardson-Moore A, Styer LM, Bigelow-Saulsbery D, Parker MM.
Expansion of HIV screening to non-clinical venues is aided by the use of dried blood spots for Western blot confirmation.
Clinical Virology.
(2013)
(58):
123-126.
Goldsamt LA, Clatts MC, Parker MM, Colon V, Hallack R, Messina MG.
Prevalence of Sexually Acquired Antiretroviral Drug Resistance in a Community Sample of HIV-Positive Men Who Have Sex with Men in New York City.
AIDS Patient Care & Stds.
(2011)
25
(5):
287-293.