Collins Owino has joined the ILRI biotech team as a research technician starting 28th May 2012. Collins has a BSc degree in Biomedical science and Technology-Biotechnology and was previously working at Kenya Medical Research Institute-Wellcome Trust Kilifi as a Research Intern.
Collins will be working with the PPR project that aims at producing a thermostable Vero-cell adopted Peste des Petits ruminants (PPR) vaccine. In his capacity, Collins will be responsible for maintaining of cell lines required for vaccine production, conducting biological assays such as viral titrations and residual moisture measurements, supporting in vivo experiments with infectious agents and conducting diagnostic tests such as PCR tests, ELISAs, virus isolation and serum neutralization.
04/07/2012: Welcome Marisol Collins
Welcome to Marisol Collins who, after volunteering to help with the first round of sampling, has formally joined the Chicken Health 4 Development (CH4D) project team starting 10 April 2012. Marisol is a veterinarian undertaking an MSc in International Animal Health at the University of Edinburgh. Marisol will be assisting with field and laboratory work. She will also analyse the data collected on ectoparasites from birds in the field sites for her MSc dissertation.
24/01/2012: Welcoming Teresia Maina
Teresia Maina(Ally) has joined the Improving livestock disease control and product safety (BT01) group as a Research technician –CBBP, working on the “Contagious bovine pleuropneumonia (CBPP)” project. This project aims at developing better diagnostics and vaccines against CBPP. CBPP is a fatal lung disease of cattle caused by a Mycoplasma.
Maina has a Masters in Molecular Biology from Vrije Universiteit Brussels (VUB, Belgium) and a Degree in Medical Microbiology from Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT).
She brings to the team her skills and experience in molecular biology and microbiology techniques. Her interest are in identifying Mycoplasma components targeted by the primary (IgM) antibody response (a proxy for early infection) and to develop a prototype slide agglutination assay based on these antigens for evaluation as a point-of-care diagnostic. She will also be responsible for purifying recombinant Mycoplasma proteins and testing them in ELISA and latex agglutination assays for specificity and sensitivity.
She can be reached in lab 6 and on email, T.Maina(at)cgiar.org
16/11/2011: PhD student to join the Mycoplasma research group Vacancy
CBPP (Contagious Bovine Pleuropneumonia), caused by Mycoplasma mycoides subsp. mycoides and present in more than 25 countries of sub-Saharan Africa is an economically important livestock disease in Africa. This PhD project aims to apply synthetic biology tools to identify and characterise Mycoplasma mycoides molecules and evaluate their function in virulence as well as for their suitability for vaccine development. The project will be carried in close collaboration with scientists at the J Craig Venter institute in Rockville, USA and INRA in Bordeaux, France.
Specifically, the successful applicant will be expected to:
- Assist in development and implementation of synthetic biology tools for Mycoplasma mycoides
- Assist in development of cell culture assays
- Test mutagenized strains and characterize host immune responses
Click HERE for more information about this vacancy
19/09/2011: Partner Visits
The BT02 team will be having a series of partner meetings this week to discuss various collaborative project details. .
The first group of visitors:
- Jayne Raper of New York University
- Chris Schoenherr of Regeneron Pharmaceuticals
- Harry Noyes of Liverpool University
- Bill Ritchie from the Roslin Institute
Will be meeting with Steve Kemp, Yumi, Charity Muteti and Victor Tsuma to review progress, plan future activities and possible additional grant applications on the NSF-BREAD project entitled “Basic Mechanisms Underlying Species Specific Trypanosome Resistance”.
The second group of visitors:
- LIam Morrison
- Annette Macleod
- Andy Tait
All from Glasgow University and/or the Wellcome Trust Centre for Molecular Parasitology who will also be discussing collaborative research projects.
8/09/2011: Welcome to the Biotech family
Rawlynce Bett (an Animal Geneticist/Breeder) has a BSc and MSc (Egerton University, Kenya), PhD (Humboldt University of Berlin, Germany) and PostDoc (Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences-SLU, Sweden). Dr. Bett was a visiting scientist on the Global Environment Fund (GEF) Asia project from April 2010, on secondment from SLU. Starting September this year, he is now a consultant on the same project.
Bett’s research interest is on sustainable utilization, improvement and conservation of indigenous farm animal genetic resources (FAnGR), and developing practical breeding programs for the same in developing countries.
His main deliverables will be decision support tools for conservation and sustainable use of indigenous FAnGR and their wild relatives, and capacity building in the GEF Asia project countries (Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Vietnam).
Bett is based in lab 8 and can be contacted on email at R.Bett(at)cgiar.org
She joins the mycoplasma research group in the Biotech Theme led by Joerg Jores working specifically on the project “Accelerating Contagious Bovine Pleuropneumonia (CBPP) research towards developing a better vaccine through the application of synthetic biology”.
Elise is a molecular biologist and has been working on antigenic variation in Plasmodium falciparum (malaria).
Elise is based in lab 8 and can be contacted on email at E.Schieck(at)cgiar.org
We wish them both a happy and fulfilling stay!
3/08/2011: Welcoming Charity Muteti to Biotech
Charity Muteti has joined the Improving characterization of livestock and pathogens (BT02) group as a research technician – reproductive technologies working on the “Magic Cow” project. This project aims at reducing African Trypanosomiasis by genetic bioengineering of cattle.
Previously, she was working with the Improving utilization of farm animal genetics resources (BT03) group in a similar capacity on the SIFET project (in vitro embryo production and embryo transfer).
She brings to the team strong skills and experience in embryology, nuclear transfer and tissue culture. Charity has a Bsc degree in Biology from the University of Baraton, Kenya.
To get in touch with charity who is in lab 1, embryology lab, call ext. 3377 or email C.Muteti(at)cgiar.org
In the same style and fashion, we all at Biotech, wish Charity a lovely time with the group and a successful career ahead!
Seminar by Marilyn Parsons on Toxoplasma
Marilyn Parsons who is the Director of Scientific Operations at Seattle Biomed (formerly Seattle Biomedical Research Institute) will be presenting a seminar at ILRI, Nairobi. Her area of expertise is on African sleeping sickness, toxomplasmosis and leishmaniasis.
Seminar Title: Fundamental cell biology and drug discovery in the human and veterinary pathogen Toxoplasma gondii
Date & Time: 26th July, 11am
Venue: ILRI Lab 8, Ndovu Room
If you would like to meet with Marily, write to Vish Nene, v.nene(at)cgiar.org
All are welcome.
20/07/2011: Welcoming Terry Amaya to Biotech
Terry Amaya has joined the Vaccines and Diagnostics Group (BT01) and Animal Units (BT71) as the Administrative Assistant. She joins ILRI from Africa Harvest Biotech Foundation International where she served as an Administrative Assistant for 6 years.
Terry has a passion for Servant Leadership and is looking forward to applying her specialty in Administration within the group. Asked what she liked so far about ILRI and her new position, Terry replies;
‘people are very friendly, not forgetting their embracing and welcoming smile that makes one feel part of the ILRI family; the new position is challenging but with integrity, a ready to learn attitude, and professionalism, everything is bound to fall in place and objectives are going to be achieved’.
Her hobbies include: reading, travelling, watching movies.
Terry is in the process of completing a BSc degree in Business Administration majoring in Management and can be reached in Lab 8, extension 3461.
From the Biotech family, we wish Terry all the very best in her new position and a lovely time at ILRI!