Zambia-Emory HIV Research Programme (ZEHRP), Zambia
Clive Michelo describes himself as, “A very curious person and hence my drive for science. I would also like to think am kind and empathetic. Empathetic to suffering because of disease. I am also scared of getting sick.
Motswedi Anderson’s research interests are in viral hepatitis (B, C, D and E) and human immunodeficiency virus. Her current project is entitled, “Occult hepatitis B virus infections in HIV-1 infected individuals in Botswana: incidence, kinetics and mechanisms”.
Sharon Khuzwayo is currently working on a project that focuses on an evolutionarily conserved, semi-invariant population of immune cells – Mucosal Associated Invariant T (MAIT) cells that are enriched at the site of tuberculosis infection, the lungs.
Bonisile Luthuli’s desire to pursue scientific research in HIV dates back to her teenage years in Dundee, in Northern KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, where she witnessed first-hand, disease devastation as a result to HIV and AIDS.
Tawanda Mandizvo graduated with a BSc in Biochemistry and Chemistry from the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN), Durban, South Africa, and a BSc Honours in Medicinal Chemistry from Rhodes University, Grahamstown, South Africa, and a Master of Medical Science degree from UKZN.
Lerato Mtshali did her Masters in Plant Breeding and Biochemistry before working in Dr Al Leslie’s immunology lab at AHRI. The change was inspired by wanting to be part of the solution when it comes to TB and HIV.
Funsho Ogunshola completed his first degree, a B.Tech (Medical Biochemistry), in Nigeria. He has always been interested in being an immunologist - to know how the immune system is so organised as to curtail diverse pathogens that we are exposed to on a daily basis.
The adage, “Nothing in life is to be feared; it is only to be understood,” is something Reddy says she strongly believes in and inspired her choice to pursue a career in HIV science. She was born and grew up in the suburb of Chatsworth in the south of Durban, KwaZulu-Natal South Africa.
Juliet Katoba obtained her bachelor’s degree in the early 2000’s from the University of Zambia and joined the University Teaching Hospital as a laboratory technician in the Virology laboratory. She worked on a project that aimed to understand the infection of HIV from mother-to-child.
Clara Agutu is a medical doctor with a Masters in public health. She has a keen interest in infectious diseases particularly HIV, TB, Malaria and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and has worked as a research medical officer at KEMRI.
Makobu Kimani is a medical doctor, with post graduate training in public Health (Epidemiology and Biostatistics). Over the last eight years he has worked with populations that are at a disproportionally higher risk of acquisition of HIV/AIDS in Nairobi, Kenya.
George Makau is based at Lund University, Sweden. He obtained his MSc degree in Molecular Biology from an Inter-University Programme in Molecular Biology (IPMB) jointly organised by Vrije Universiteit Brussels, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven and Antwerp University in Belgium.
Ian Oyaro is a veterinary surgeon with a Masters in Microbiology. He has worked on sequencing and proteomic based techniques in a quest to improve the diagnosis of acute non-traumatic coma at the Kenyan coast.
Elizabeth Wahome has been working at the Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI) Wellcome Trust Programme (KWTRP) in Kilifi, which is supported by the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative (IAVI), as data manager.
Patrick Lungu decided to become a scientist at a tender age but it was during his second grade of primary school that he decided to become a medical doctor. His interest in TB research stems from the challenges he faces in treating TB in his clinical practice.
Moses Sakala’s journey in the field of immunology and antiviral therapies started with his observance of many people suffering from viral infections, including very close relatives who had been taken away by HIV despite being on medication for some time; with no hope of being cured.
Kesaobaka Molebatsi is a lecturer at the University of Botswana Statistics department. He attained Master of Arts (Statistics) and Bachelor of Arts (Economics and Statistics) qualifications from the same university in 2012 and 2010 respectively.
Kaelo Seatla graduated with an MB.BS at the St Augustine Campus of the University of the West Indies, Trinidad and Tobago in 2008. He has worked in various capacities as a government medical officer before joining BHP as a study physician/co-investigator in 2014.
Anne Kapaata has always been interested in saving lives through science. Motivated by a father who was a laboratory scientist, she did her BSc in Biomedical Laboratory technology and later advanced with a Master of Science in biomedical laboratory science and management.
Center of Research for Emerging and Re-Emerging Diseases (CREMER), Yaounde, Cameroon
Nelson Sonela has a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry, Honours and a Masters degree in Biochemistry from the University of Yaounde I- Cameroon. He is currently enrolled at the University of Rome Tor Vergata and is very interested in understanding host pathogen interaction.
Upasana Ramphal transitioned from industry to academia to pursue her Masters in Medical Science at the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal in Durban, South Africa. She was previously involved in enzyme technology research as well as in validation of equipment, processes, utilities and in the management
Christina Kourie is a speech pathology and audiology graduate from the University of Witwatersrand (Wits) in Johannesburg, South Africa, who is currently completing her Masters in Speech Pathology part-time through Wits. She works as an audiologist full time.
Kenya AIDS Vaccine Initiative - Institute of Clinical Research (KAVI-ICR), Nairobi, Kenya
Geoffrey Oino is a Study Clinician at the Kenya AIDS Vaccine Initiative (KAVI) Institute of Clinical Research (ICR) at the University of Nairobi in Kenya. Since joining KAVI ICR in 2010, he has been involved in several epidemiological studies and four HIV vaccine clinical trials.
Nomfanelo Maenetje is currently employed as a laboratory technician at The Aurum Institute in Johannesburg, South Africa and is studying towards a Master’s Degree programme in Biomedical Technology at the Tshwane University of Technology.
London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) Distance Learning
Rhoda Kabuti is currently associated with Partners for Health and Development in Africa (PHDA), University of Nairobi, and the University of Manitoba Kenya, Research Collaborative Group. She has a degree in Environmental Health and a Diploma in Project Management.
London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) Distance Learning
Duncan Okall holds a Bachelor’s degree in Community Health and Development and currently works as a Project Co-ordinator for a cohort study run by Nyanza Reproductive Health Society (NRHS) in Kisumu, Kenya.
Vernon Musale obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Medical Laboratory Science from the Adventist University of the Philippines. He initially chose to pursue a career in the health sector because he wanted to understand the pathogenesis of various diseases.
Dorcas Maruapula’s study focuses on the Prevalence of Minor HIV-1 Drug Resistant variants in Antiretroviral –naïve HIV-1 Infected Patients in Botswana. She is also working at Botswana Harvard AIDS Institute Partnership as a Senior Laboratory Scientist.
Tshepiso Mbangiwa graduated from the University of Botswana in 2014 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biological Sciences. She has done some work on prevalence and molecular characterisation of Hepatitis D virus in Botswana; she presented this at the 2nd annual African Forum Conference.
Tuelo Mogashoa graduated with Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry/Microbiology from University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa in 2005. She has always been passionate about research especially in HIV and TB.
Mompati Mogwele is a research scientist who graduated with BSc (Biological Sciences) from University of Botswana. At BHP he worked in various clinical trial studies which include Infant Molecular Diagnosis where infants who are less than 18 months are diagnosed for HIV.
Alida Ngwije has her Master's degree in International Public Health from the University of Sydney, Australia. She is currently studying HIV drug resistance among female sex workers at Project San Francisco In Rwanda.
Wonderful Tatenda Choga is a recipient of Merck-UNESCO Researchers Award. The Merck Foundation is a German philanthropic organisation that aims to improve the health and wellbeing of people and advance their lives through science and technology.