Prof. Obiageli Nnodu (Principal Investigator)Prof. Obiageli Nnodu is the Associate Professor of Haemato-Oncology, Ag., Director for Centre for Sickle Cell Disease Research & Training, University of Abuja (CESRTA), and a Consultant Haematologist at University of Abuja Teaching Hospital. She is a Chevening Scholar with 29 years experience in the field of haematology and blood transfusion and recipient of several international fellowships at Imperial College of Medicine, London; Karolinska Institute & Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden; University Hospital, Lund, Sweden and the National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, Maryland. She is a founding member of Sickle CHARTA, the Haemoglobinopathies Working Group of the Nigerian Society for Haematology and Blood Transfusion, the Sickle Cell Support Society of Nigeria (SCSSN), and The Nigerian SCD Network. In these capacities, she helped articulate a strategy for the control of sickle cell disease in Nigeria and worked with others to build a platform for multidisciplinary multi-institutional collaborative research in SCD. She also helped organize a highly successful international conference on SCD in June 2015 with a post conference UK-Nigeria Sickle Cell Disease Research Workshop in collaboration with the British High Commission, the University of Abuja and its affiliate hospitals and advocated for the establishment of CESRTA. She has served on various technical committees for the government on NCDs and completed a number national assignment related to sickle cell disease. As Vice Chairman of the SCSSN, she coordinates all in country activities of the Network including the training of media program persons and community health extension workers on SCD. She is Chair of Advocacy for Sickle Pan African Network (SPAN), a member of European Haematology Association, Union for International Cancer Control, African Organisation for Research & Training in Cancer and the Academy of Clinical Laboratory Physicians & Scientists. Dr Nnodu possesses significant strategic planning and capacity building skills. She has coordinated a number of multi-institutional and community based research projects including the DFID Funded DeLPHE Project. Her research focus is on the genetic determinants of co-morbidities associated with haemoglobin S and the control of SCD at community level.
Dr. Chizobam Nwankwo (Project Manager)Dr Nwankwo is a consultant Haematologist and lecturer. She graduated from Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka, Nigeria MBBS in 2000. She was the pioneer haematology resident at National Hospital Abuja and became a fellow of the National Postgraduate Medical College of Nigeria –FMCPath (Haematology) in 2014. Her main interest is in sickle cell disease, blood transfusion and medical education. She had training in apheresis at Kings College Hospital London through the Visitor training program by the American Society of Haematology. Dr Nwankwo has taught severally at the update course for primary for Faculty of Pathology organized by the National Postgraduate Medical Collegeof Nigeria.
Prof. Oyekanmi Nash (Data Coordinator)Prof Nash is the Director of the Genetics, Genomics and Bioinformatics Department, at NABDA. He is also the coordinator of the Initiative for Translational Research on Tropical and Emerging Infectious Diseases at the NABDA-Southwest Biotechnology Center of Excellence at the University of Ibadan. He is an A/Prof to the Biological Sciences Department, Nigerian Defense Academy, Kaduna. Before returning to Nigeria in 2006, he was a research associate at the Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, New York where he worked on the evolution of HIV-1 Reverse Transcriptase for Molecular Biology applications. As a postdoctoral fellow with the Canadian Protein Engineering Center of Excellence (PENCE), University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada, he worked on the engineering of the first "Mannosynthase." A/Prof Nash is also the Program Director of the West African Biotechnology Workshops Series (WABWS), which has recently metamorphosed into the Center for Bioscience and Biotechnology Innovation (CBBI). He is a Planning Committee member and Africa Regional Director for the International Consortium on Anti-Virals (ICAV).
Prof. Samuel Asala (Research)Prof Asala is a Professor of Anatomy (Neuroscience and Forensic Anthropology). With 38 years of University teaching, research and administrative experience in Nigeria, United Kingdom, Japan, Zimbabwe and South Africa, he was the Foundation Dean of the Faculty of Basic Medical Sciences and later Provost of the College of Health Sciences, University of Abuja. He was also the founding President of the Neuroscience Society of Nigeria, a subsidiary of the Society of Neuroscientists of Africa (SONA). His research experience grew from the University of Sheffield where he obtained his PhD degree in Neuroanatomy in 1984 through the Institute for Medical and Dental Engineering, Tokyo Medical and Dental University where he undertook postdoctoral research in biocybernetics in 1988 to the Universities of Zimbabwe and the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg where he was a major contributor to the establishment of the Forensic Anthropology Research Units. He was a member of the medical curriculum development committees at the University of Zimbabwe and the University of the Witwatersrand. As an Associate Professor, he was the Head of the Division of Morphological Anatomy at the University of the Witwatersrand up to 2001. As Professor of Anatomy, he became the President and Fellow of the Anatomical Society of Nigeria and pioneered anatomy teaching and curriculum development in two Nigerian Universities. He was a member of the National Universities Commission expert committee that set the Minimum academic standard for medical education in Nigeria in 2004. He was the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Anatomical Sciences and a member of the Medical Ethics Society of Nigeria. In 2012, he was presented with the prestigious Development in Nigeria Merit Award (DINMA) by People State Resource Magazine in recognition of his contribution to the training of medical and allied medical personnel in Nigeria. As Provost, he provided significant support for the development of Sickle Cell research efforts and ultimate establishment of the Centre for Sickle Cell Disease Research and Training (CESRTA) in University of Abuja. He has been and still is a supervisor of Masters and Doctorate projects across several medical science disciplines.
Prof. Olopade Olufunmilayo (Site Advisor)Prof. Olufunmilayo is the Walter L. Palmer Distinguished Service Professor of Medicine and Human Genetics, Dean for Global Health, and Director of the Center for Innovation in Global Health at the University of Chicago. Professor Olopade develops innovative strategies for comprehensive cancer risk assessment and prevention based on evolving understanding of genetic and nongenetic factors in individual patients, with a focus on women of African ancestry across the Diaspora. She has received numerous honors and awards, including honorary degrees from North Central, Dominican, Bowdoin, and Princeton Universities; MacArthur Foundation Fellowship; Doris Duke Distinguished Clinical Scientist and Exceptional Mentor Award; American Cancer Society Clinical Research Professorship; Officer of the Order of the Niger Award; and the Franklin D. Roosevelt Freedom from Want Award. She is an elected member of the Association of American Physicians, National Academy of Medicine, American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Philosophical Society, and currently serves on the board of directorsfor Susan G. Komen, Cancer IQ, Lyric Opera of Chicago, and MacArthur Foundation.
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