The Centre for Infectious Disease Research in Zambia (CIDRZ), Lead Laboratory Scientist under the Enteric Disease and Vaccine Research Unit (EDVRU), Michelo Simuyandi was awarded the Prof Neil Nkanza award for emerging researcher, at the 9th Zambia Health Research Conference (ZHRC) held at Mulungushi Conference Centre.
This award category is aimed at recognizing researchers contribution to science and is dedicated to Professor Neil Nkanza, who was a pioneer in laboratory work which resulted in the opening of Nkanza Laboratory.
Mr Simuyandi scooped the emerging male researcher award in recognition of his contribution to clinical and health research and as one with the potential to impact the research landscape.
Brief Biography of Michelo Simuyandi
He is a Zambian Molecular and Cell biologist with research experience in epidemiology and vaccinology. His approach is to combine basic science research and translation/implementation research.
Michelo currently holds the position of Research Fellow at CIDRZ in the Vaccines and Enteric Disease Research Unit (EDVRU) (which he is a co-founder).
This role entails being the lead scientist on all research projects relating to:
- enteric vaccine evaluation and,
- enteric pathogen epidemiology and understating both vaccine and natural immunity.
His current research interests include;
- vaccine research (development and evaluation),
- diagnostics and
- epidemiology and natural immunity of enteric pathogens.
His research experience includes working as a research scientist on understanding innate immune response modulation by helminthic infections, effect of micronutrient supplementation oral vaccine immunogenicity and investigating oral vaccine adjuvants.
Michelo also has experience in conducting RCTs of household water quality interventions in both rural and peri urban Zambia aimed at reducing diarrhoea incidence in children and people living with HIV.
Currently, he is the Principal Investigator on one of the BactiVac catalyst pump prime grants funded by MRC/GCFR which is evaluating a rapid diagnostic assay for enterotoxigenic E. coli (ETEC) and Shigella among children presenting with diarrhea at selected health facilities in Lusaka, Zambia and Co-Principal Investigator on several trials and research projects on infectious disease epidemiology and vaccine evaluation.
The Zambia Health Research Conference (ZHRC) is hosted by the National Health Research Authority (NHRA) on a yearly basis. This year, the conference was health virtually from 7th to 9th Ooctober,2020, under the theme “Achieving Universal Health Coverage through Research Innovations, Technology, and Knowledge Management”