Prof Bavesh Kana
Conference Chair 2014
Prof. Bavesh Kana is currently the head of the Wits University node of the DST/NRF Centre of Excellence for Biomedical TB Research where he is involved in studying tuberculosis with a focus on identifying novel targets for the development of new antimicrobial agents.
He received his PhD at Wits and conducted some of his postdoctoral training at the Public Health Research Institute in New Jersey. He has also worked in laboratories at the University of Pennsylvania, Texas A&M University, the Russian Academy of Sciences and Harvard Medical School.
Bavesh has been trained in basic epidemiology at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Heath in New York. Apart from being an established researcher of international standing, he was awarded the MRC Career Development Award, the Friedel Sellschop Research Award and an NRF C rating. He is one of only two scientists in Africa, among the top biomedical scientists from 12 countries, to be appointed as an International Early Career Scientist of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. In 2012, he was chosen as one of the top 200 Young South Africans by the Mail and Guardian newspaper.
Track 1: Detection and Prevention of TB
Prof Kheertan Dheda
Keertan Dheda is Professor of Respiratory Medicine, Director of the Lung Infection and Immunity Unit and Head of the Division of Pulmonology at the University of Cape Town.
His main research interests are the study of the immunopathogenesis, epidemiology and diagnosis of tuberculosis, including drug-resistant TB.
He is the co-author of 120 peer-reviewed publications, holds patents that are being commercialised, and he serves on the editorial boards of several peer-reviewed international journals including Lancet Respiratory Diseases, American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Medicine, and PLoS One.
He serves as the co-chair of the LTBI sub-group of the STOP TB Partnership. He has been the recipient of several prestigious awards including the 2010 International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease Scientific Award, and holds several large local and multi-national grants including those funded by the EU, NIH and Wellcome Trust.
Dr Rob Warren
Rob Warren obtained a PhD degree in Biochemistry from the University of Cape Town in 1995.
Under his guidance the study of the molecular epidemiology of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in a high incidence setting (Cape Town, South Africa) has been brought to the forefront of international tuberculosis research. This study now represents the largest molecular epidemiological data set in the developing world and has been referred to as a national heritage.
Much of this work has provided new understanding, which has allowed long standing dogmas to be challenged. He has published more than 170 papers in international peer reviewed journals in the fields of molecular epidemiology, drug resistance and bacterial evolution.
Track 2: TB Treatment
Dr Nesri Padayatchi
Nesri Padayatchi, MBChB, DCH, DTM&H, DPH, MS(Epi), is a clinician and founding member of CAPRISA and CAPRISA's Deputy Director since 2006.
She has over 25 years clinical and research experience in the field of TB-HIV. In 2001, she completed a Masters degree in Epidemiology at Columbia University, New York, on a Fogarty Scholarship. She serves on the South African National and KZN MDR-TB Advisory Board.
Her leadership in TB-HIV management is illustrated by her role in multiple international clinical trials. She has published widely in the field of TB-HIV in peer reviewed journals and is a reviewer of several international journals.
Dr Andries Steyn
Dr. Steyn received his B.Sc. and M.Sc. degrees in Microbiology from the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa. He completed his thesis in the lab of Professor Julius Marmur at the Department of Biochemistry at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, New York and was awarded a Ph.D. degree from the University of Stellenbosch in 1995.
Dr. Steyn subsequently conducted postdoctoral research as a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Fellow in the lab of Dr. Barry Bloom at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and the Harvard School of Public Health.
He joined the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB), Department of Microbiology in July 2003. In 2011, he accepted a dual faculty position at the KwaZulu-Natal Research Institute of TB and HIV (K-RITH) in Durban, South Africa. His area of interest is the redox and bioenergetic mechanisms of M. tuberculosis persistence.
Track 3: TB Management
Dr Margot Uys
Over the last five years, Dr Uys, as project manager for that'sit, (a PEPFAR funded collaboration between the SA Medical Research Council and the Foundation for Professional Development [FPD]), increased access of HIV care and services for TB patients by establishing a network of sites in areas of extremes, overcoming a range of challenges in resource poor areas across five provinces in South Africa.
Since December 2012 Dr Uys is Head of the Department Priority Health Programmes in the Technical Assistance Cluster at FPD, managing PEPFAR funded clinical programmes as well as Primary Health care re-engineering, NHI and Community involvement initiatives for FPD.
Dr Uys has more than ten years senior health care management experience, both in the private sector (Life Healthcare) as well as in the public health sector. For the last 15 years she has been primarily focusing on the impact of TB in health care management and improving the SA National TB programme indicators through streamlined management, operational research, mentoring and systems strengthening.
Dr Tendesayi Kufa
Tendesayi is a medical doctor who holds a Master's in Public Health from the University of California at Berkeley, post graduate diploma in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene from University of the Witwatersrand and is registered for a PhD at the University of Amsterdam.
She has been with The Aurum Institute since 2009 and main research interests are epidemiology and prevention of HIV associated TB. Recent/current research projects include a cluster randomized trial to evaluate an intervention to facilitate TB/HIV integration, a prospective study to estimate tuberculosis incidence among HIV-infected adults with high CD4 counts and a systematic review of the incidence of TB after ART.