SCIENTIFIC ADVISORY BOARD

PD. Dr. Taurai Tasara

Dr. Tasara is veterinary food safety microbiologist, research group leader and lecturer at the institute for food safety and hygiene of the Vestsuisse faculty at the University of Zurich (Switzerland) where he holds a venia legend (PD) in molecular food safety and hygiene. He is currently involved in teaching and research supervision at both undergraduate and post graduate levels with an emphasis on veterinary public health and molecular food safety. Research conducted in his lab focuses on molecular mechanisms underlying stress resilience and virulence as well as the molecular epidemiology and population genetics of different foodborne pathogens. Dr Tasara is passionate about food safety, infectious diseases and antimicrobial resistance issues affecting the African continent and he actively develops research projects with other researchers that focus on food, water and infectious disease pathogens, as well as microbiological and AMR surveillance at the human-animal-environment interfaces. In this context, Dr. Tasara has specific interests on research and development of genomics based diagnostic tools and applications for foodborne and infectious disease pathogen detection as well as  monitoring the quality and safety of food and water sources.

Dr. Cathrine Ziyomo

Cathrine is an expert in plant genetics and agriculture who aims to enhance human health using the latest technological advancements in DNA tools. Dr. Ziyomo currently holds a position as a molecular breeder at the International Livestock Research Institute in Kenya, and was previously a maize Molecular Breeding Scientist Lead for Dupont Pioneer’s maize research program. She did her postdoctoral research at Donald Danforth Plant Science Centre in Missouri. She also held research assistant positions at the University of Minnesota and the International Rice Research Institute in the Phillipines. Dr. Ziyomo won numerous awards, scholarships and grants throughout her career. She also sits on numerous boards, and is a member of numerous professional affiliations (e.g. member of
Southern Africa Plant Breeders Association and member of the Crop Science Society of America). She also has several peer-reviewed publications.

Prof. Dr. Nyasha Chin'ombe

Nyasha is a trained molecular vaccinologist currently registered with the Medical Laboratory and Clinical Scientist Council of Zimbabwe as a medical microbiologist. He holds a Bachelor of Science Honours in Biological Sciences and a Master of Science in Biotechnology from the University of Zimbabwe as well as a PhD in Medical Microbiology from the University of Cape Town. His doctoral research interrogated the development and testing of attenuated recombinant bacterial-based HIV/AIDS vaccines. After doctoral studies, he was awarded a postdoctoral fellowship under the South African Vaccinology Research Chair programme to do further research on DNA-based HIV/AIDS vaccines in the Division of Medical Virology of the University of Cape Town. He was later awarded a second postdoctoral vaccinology research fellowship at Emory Vaccine Centre in the United States. After a stint at Emory University, he returned to South Africa to take up another postdoctoral fellowship in pharmacogenomics in the Division of Human Genetics of the University of Cape Town. Nyasha is currently a full professor at the University of Zimbabwe and teaches biotechnology, microbiology, virology, vaccinology, molecular biology and genomics to medical and science students.

Prof. Dr. Kissaou Tchedre

Dr. Kissaou Tchedre has international research & development and business experience in Japan, France and Switzerland. He is currently Assistant Professor at Austin Community College, Texas, USA; where he teaches several cell, molecular biology and biotechnology courses.  In addition to teaching,  Dr. Kissaou Tchedre also works with  the biotechnology company Nanoscope Therapeutics as Director for Biopharmaceutical Operations. At Nanoscope Therapeutics he supports development programs on gene therapy from preclinical to clinical studies, and has management responsibilities for manufacturing and analytical operations. Dr. Tchedre is a biomedical scientist with decades of experience in commercial occular medical device development at Menicon, a Japanese pharma/medical devices company. He got his Masters of science degree in molecular biology, and a PhD in biomedical sciences at The University of North Texas Health Science Center (UNTHSC). Dr. Tchedre did his post doc at Schepens Eye Research Institute at Harvard Medical School.

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