Dr Maxine Caws

Senior Lecturer

Max joined the school in 2014 after 11 years at the Oxford University Clinical Research Unit in Vietnam where she was Head of the TB Group with research spanning diverse aspects of tuberculosis including extrapulmonary tuberculosis, novel diagnostics, drug resistance, and host:pathogen interaction.

Max undertook her PhD studying immunopathogenesis of tuberculous meningitis at the UK Mycobacterium Reference Unit with Kings College, London (awarded 2002) after a BSc in biochemistry from the University of St Andrews.  She also has an MSc in epidemiology from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine completed as a component of a Wellcome Trust training fellowship (2007-2011).

Research interests

  • Research on diagnosis, epidemiology and treatment of tuberculous meningitis.
  • M.tuberculosis phylogeny, virulence factors and drug resistance.
  • Phenotypic and clinical manifestations of pathogen genotype.
  • Host:pathogen genotype interactions.
  • The development of low-cost, rapid diagnostics.
  • Epidemiology and diagnosis of drug resistant tuberculosis.
  • Diagnosis of HIV-associated, pediatric and extrapulmonary tuberculosis.


Current and recent supervision

  1. Dr Thuong Nguyen: Wellcome Trust Training Fellow in Public Health and Tropical Medicine. Supervisor. June 2012-2015.
  2. Dr Dang Thi Minh Ha. PhD: HIV-associated tuberculosis. Open University, UK, 2011.
  3. Dau Quang Tho. PhD: Drug resistant tuberculosis. Dau Quang Tho. Open University, 2012.
  4. Nguyen Duc Bang. PhD: Tuberculous meningitis. Nguyen Duc Bang. Open University, UK, 2013.
  5. Dr Phan Vuong Kach Thai. PhD: Isoniazid resistant tuberculosis. Phan Vuong Kach Thai. Open University, UK, Current
  6. Dr Do Chau Giang. PhD: Pediatric tuberculosis. Open University, UK, current
  7. Dr Tran Thi Sinh. PhD: Pediatric Tuberculosis in Vietnam; Diagnosis and Epidemiology. Open University, UK, current.
  8. Dr Doortje Heemskerk. PhD: Intensified Treatment of tuberculous meningitis. Oxford University, UK, current.

Selected publications

  • Selected publications

    Heemskerk,D., Caws, M., Farrar, J. Book chapter: Tuberculosis meningitis in Infections of the central nervous system 4th edition. 2014.  Ed: Scheld, Whitley, and Marra. In Press.

    Nhu, N.T., D. Heemskerk, D.D. Thu, T.T. Chau, N.T. Mai, H.D. Nghia, P.P. Loc, D.T. Ha, L. Merson, T.T. Thinh, J. Day, N.V. Chau, M. Wolbers, J. Farrar, and M. CawsEvaluation of Xpert MTB/RIF for the diagnosis of tuberculous meningitis. J Clin Microbiol, 2013.

    Nguyen Thi Quynh Nhu, Dang Thi Minh Ha, Nguyen Thi Ngoc Lan, Nguyen Thi Hong Duyen, Jeremy Farrar, M. Caws.2012. Association of High MIC resistance mutations for streptomycin with the Beijing genotype of Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Int J Tuberc Lung Dis 16:527-531.

    Thuong, N. T., T. R. Hawn, T. T. Chau, N. D. Bang, N. T. Yen, G. E. Thwaites, Y. Y. Teo, M. Seielstad, M. Hibberd, N. T. Lan, M. Caws, J. J. Farrar, and S. J. Dunstan. 2012. Epiregulin (EREG) variation is associated with susceptibility to tuberculosis. Genes Immun 13:275-81.

    Wolbers, M., D. Heemskerk, T. T. Chau, N. T. Yen, M. Caws, J. Farrar, and J. Day. 2011. Sample size requirements for separating out the effects of combination treatments: randomised controlled trials of combination therapy vs. standard treatment compared to factorial designs for patients with tuberculous meningitis. Trials 12:26.

    Tran, S.T., J.P. Renschler, H.T. Le, H.T. Dang, T.M. Dao, A.N. Pham, L.T. Nguyen, H. Van Nguyen, T. Thi Thu Nguyen, S. Ngoc Le, A. Fox, M. Caws, N. Thi Quynh, P. Horby, and H. Wertheim, Diagnostic accuracy of microscopic Observation Drug Susceptibility (MODS) assay for pediatric tuberculosis in Hanoi, Vietnam.PLoS One, 2013. 8(9): p. e72100.

    Nhu, NTQ., Ha, DTM , Thu, DDA., Lan, NTN., Quyet, TV., Tuyen., NTB., Ha, VT., Dung, NTH., Farrar, J.,Caws, M. 2013. Evaluation of Xpert MTB/RIF and MODS assay for the diagnosis of pediatric tuberculosis. BMC Infect Dis. doi:10.1186/1471-2334-13-31

    Ho Dang Trung, N., T. Le Thi Phuong, M. Wolbers, H. Nguyen Van Minh, V. Nguyen Thanh, M. P. Van, N. T. Thieu, T. L. Van, D. T. Song, P. L. Thi, T. N. Thi Phuong, C. B. Van, V. Tang, T. H. Ngoc Anh, D. Nguyen, T. P. Trung, L. N. Thi Nam, H. T. Kiem, T. N. Thi Thanh, J. Campbell, M. Caws, J. Day, M. D. de Jong, C. N. Van Vinh, H. R. Van Doorn, H. T. Tinh, J. Farrar, and C. Schultsz. 2012. Aetiologies of central nervous system infection in Viet Nam: a prospective provincial hospital-based descriptive surveillance study. PLoS One 7:e37825.

    Tho, D. Q., M. E. Torok, N. T. Yen, N. D. Bang, N. T. Lan, V. S. Kiet, N. van Vinh Chau, N. H. Dung, J. Day, J. Farrar, M. Wolbers, and M. Caws. 2012. Influence of Antituberculosis Drug Resistance and Mycobacterium tuberculosis Lineage on Outcome in HIV-Associated Tuberculous Meningitis. Antimicrob Agents Chemother56:3074-9.

    Huyen, M. N., K. Kremer, N. T. Lan, F. G. Cobelens, T. N. Buu, N. H. Dung, M. Caws, E. W. Tiemersma, and D. van Soolingen. 2012. Mixed tuberculosis infections in rural South Vietnam. J Clin Microbiol 50:1586-92.

    Ha, D. T., N. T. Lan, M. Wolbers, V. S. Kiet, H. T. Hang, N. H. Duc, T. M. Huong, V. M. Bach, N. T. Thao, T. V. Quyet, N. T. Tuyen, V. T. Ha, N. T. Nho, D. V. Hoa, P. T. Anh, N. H. Dung, J. Farrar, and M. Caws. 2012. Evaluation of microscopic observation drug susceptibility assay for diagnosis of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis in Viet Nam. BMC Infect Dis 12:49.

    Krishnan, N., W. Malaga, P. Constant, M. Caws, T. Thi Hoang Chau, J. Salmons, N. Thi Ngoc Lan, N. D. Bang, M. Daffe, D. B. Young, B. D. Robertson, C. Guilhot, and G. E. Thwaites. 2011. Mycobacterium tuberculosis Lineage Influences Innate Immune Response and Virulence and Is Associated with Distinct Cell Envelope Lipid Profiles. PLoS One 6:e23870.

    Tho, D. Q., N. T. Lan, N. V. Chau, J. Farrar, and M. Caws. 2011. Multiplex allele-specific polymerase chain reaction for detection of isoniazid resistance in Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Int J Tuberc Lung Dis 15:799-803.

    Thwaites, G. E., S. M. Bhavnani, T. Thi Hong Chau, J. P. Hammel, M. E. Torok, S. A. Van Wart, P. Phuong Mai, D. K. Reynolds, M. Caws, N. Thi Dung, T. Tinh Hien, R. Kulawy, J. Farrar, and P. G. Ambrose. 2011. A randomised pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic comparison of fluoroquinolones for tuberculous meningitis. Antimicrob Agents Chemother.

    Heemskerk, D., J. Day, T. T. Chau, N. H. Dung, N. T. Yen, N. D. Bang, L. Merson, P. Olliaro, T. Pouplin, M. Caws, M. Wolbers, and J. Farrar. 2011. Intensified treatment with high dose rifampicin and levofloxacin compared to standard treatment for adult patients with tuberculous meningitis (TBM-IT): protocol for a randomized controlled trial. Trials 12:25.