Marakalala wins fellowship for TB work

10 Aug 2017 - 14:45

Dr Mohlopheni Marakalala will use his huge research grant to explore aspects of the pandemic tuberculosis disease.

Dr Mohlopheni Marakalala, senior lecturer in UCT’s Division of Immunology and an associate member of the Institute of Infectious Disease and Molecular Medicine (IDM), has been awarded a Wellcome Trust Intermediate Fellowship in Public Health and Tropical Medicine.

The Wellcome Trust Intermediate programme helps mid-career researchers from low- and middle-income countries to establish independent research programmes in their countries. The programme strives to support research that will improve public health and tropical medicine at a local, national and global level. 

Marakalala went through a competitive application process and the award will start in September this year. For his application, Marakalala was sponsored by Professor Valerie Mizrahi, director of the IDM.

Marakalala will be studying human tuberculosis granulomas as targets for host-directed therapies and prediction of disease progression. His award is worth GBP600 000 (around R10 million at current exchange rates) over five years.

He is a fellow of the Next Einstein Forum, a recipient of the 2016 UCT College of Fellows Young Researcher Award and the 2016 South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC) Scientific Merit Award (Silver), and a Visiting Scientist (Adjunct) in the Department of Immunology and Infectious Diseases at the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health.