Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Scientific Communities
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article

New Director Named for Leading HIV Research Centre in South Africa

Published: Wednesday, September 04, 2013
Last Updated: Wednesday, September 04, 2013
Bookmark and Share
Professor Pillay will take up his post on secondment from UCL on 1 November 2013.

Deenan Pillay, Professor of Virology at UCL (University College London), is named as the new Director of the Africa Centre for Health and Population Studies, one of the Wellcome Trust’s major overseas programmes.

The Africa Centre is part of the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) and is based within a rural population with one of the highest burdens of HIV in the world.

There, it carries out research into the impact of the virus on the local community and, in partnership with the local Department of Health, runs one of the region's largest rural, primary-care-level antiretroviral therapy programmes.

It also has a strong capacity-building programme, providing opportunities for staff to study towards university degrees, including Master's degrees and doctorates, and for community members to gain other skills-based training.

Deenan Pillay is Professor of Virology, and Co-Director of the Division of Infection and Immunity, at University College London. He is a clinical virologist, having trained in London, Newcastle and San Diego, and has a long standing research and clinical interest in HIV virology, particularly related to the study of global HIV drug resistance and transmission.

He helped establish the Bloomsbury Research Institute, a partnership between infectious disease research groups from UCL and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

Dr Ted Bianco, Acting Director of the Wellcome Trust, says: "We are delighted that Deenan Pillay has agreed to take up the role of Director of the Africa Centre. Deenan is a highly respected clinical investigator in the research and public health communities. He has shown great leadership in creating partnerships amongst researchers and institutions, as illustrated by the Bloomsbury Research Institute. Such experience will prove extremely valuable in building the collaborative relationships that will maximize the value of the Africa Centre."

Professor Pillay says: "This is a very exciting new challenge. The potential to answer some of the key remaining questions relating to spread of infections such as HIV and TB is immense. To do so in the dynamic setting of South Africa, with its rapidly emerging biomedical research strength, is a tremendous privilege."

Professor Nelson Ijumba, UKZN's Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research, says: "UKZN would like to congratulate Professor Pillay on his appointment and hope that, through his leadership, the Africa Centre will continue to be at the forefront of knowledge production and community empowerment in HIV/AIDS."

The Africa Centre was established by the Wellcome Trust in partnership with the South African Medical Research Council in 1998 and employs around 350 people, including around 25 scientists.

The cornerstone of its research programme is a biannual household demographic survey that since 2000, has collected data on births, deaths, marriage and migration events, as well as household economics. The survey covers a population of around 90,000 people in 11,000 households.

An additional annual HIV surveillance study, established in 2003, covers adults 15 years and older, collecting data on HIV status, sexual behaviour and relationships, and other health issues.

The Centre also has a virology laboratory at the Medical School in Durban, with research relating to the dynamics of HIV in breast milk and population viral phylogenetics.

The Centre has been behind several high profile research papers recently, including two papers in the journal Science this year demonstrating for the first time the positive impact of antiretroviral therapy on the rate of new HIV infections in a community setting and that such therapies are a highly cost-effective investment for the people of South Africa.

Professor Pillay will take up his post at the Africa Centre on a secondment from UCL on 1 November 2013. His appointment follows the decision by Professor Marie-Louise Newell to return to the UK to take up a position at the University of Southampton. Professor Newell has been Director of the Africa Centre since 2005.

Further Information
Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 2,600+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More Than 3,800+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters

Sign In

Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

Related Content

Possible Evidence for Human Transmission of Alzheimer’s Pathology
Study suggests that under a particular set of circumstances, amyloid-ß may potentially be transmissible through certain medical procedures.
Friday, September 11, 2015
New Variant of Streptococcal Bacteria
Scientists have discovered a new variant of streptococcal bacteria that has contributed to a rise in disease cases in the UK over the last 17 years.
Wednesday, July 15, 2015
Smoking Signs
Research reveals epigenetic alterations caused by smoking.
Wednesday, May 20, 2015
New Biomarkers To Spot Pancreatic Cancer Early
A combination of two biomarkers can identify pre-clinical pancreatic cancer.
Thursday, February 05, 2015
Autolus Launches With £30m Investment
UCL cancer immunotherapy company, Autolus is launches to develop T-cell therapies for haematological and solid tumours.
Thursday, January 22, 2015
Raman Spectroscopy May Enable Non-Invasive Diagnosis of Bone Diseases
Detection of a genetic ‘brittle bone’ disease known as Osteogenesis Imperfecta (OI) is possible by simply scanning a patient’s limbs.
Wednesday, December 03, 2014
UCL Research Helps Paralyzed Man to Recover Function
UCL scientists develop a pioneering cell transplantation treatment.
Tuesday, October 28, 2014
Light-Activated Antimicrobial Surface Also Works in the Dark
The new antibacterial material, developed by researchers at UCL, has potential for cutting hospital acquired infections.
Tuesday, March 25, 2014
Designer Piercings: New Membrane Pores with DNA Nanotechnology
A new way to build membrane-crossing pores, using Lego-like DNA building blocks, has been developed by scientists.
Tuesday, November 12, 2013
100,000 UK Volunteers Invited to Donate Genome to Science
The search for UK volunteers willing to donate their genome and health data to science has begun with the launch today of the Personal Genome Project UK.
Tuesday, November 12, 2013
Scientists Transplant Photoreceptors from Retina Grown ‘In a Dish’
Study suggests that embryonic stem cells provide unlimited supply of healthy photoreceptors to treat blindness in humans.
Tuesday, July 23, 2013
How 'Obesity Gene' Triggers Weight Gain
Researchers have discovered why people with a variation of the FTO gene that affects one in six of the population are 70 per cent more likely to become obese.
Wednesday, July 17, 2013
'Chase and Run' Cell Movement Mechanism Explains Metastasis
A mechanism that cells use to group together and move around the body has been described for the first time by scientists at UCL.
Thursday, June 20, 2013
More Than Two Hundred Genes Identified for Crohn’s Disease
More than two hundred gene locations have now been identified for the chronic bowel condition Crohn's Disease, in a study that analysed the entire human genome.
Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Scientists Uncover Achilles Heel of Chronic Inflammatory Pain
BBSRC funded discovery could lead to a brand new class of drugs to treat chronic pain caused by inflammatory conditions.
Thursday, August 19, 2010
Scientific News
Researchers Develop Classification Model for Cancers Caused by KRAS
Most frequently mutated cancer gene help oncologists choose more effective cancer therapies.
Fixing Holes in the Heart Without Invasive Surgery
UV-light enabled catheter is a medical device which represents a major shift in how cardiac defects are repaired.
Chromosomal Chaos
Penn study forms basis for future precision medicine approaches for Sezary syndrome
Enzyme Malfunction May be Why Binge Drinking Can Lead to Alcoholism
A new study in mice shows that restoring the synthesis of a key brain chemical tied to inhibiting addictive behavior may help prevent alcohol cravings following binge drinking.
Key to Natural Detoxifier’s Reactivity Discovered
Results have implications for health, drug design and chemical synthesis.
New Treatment for Obesity Developed
Researchers at the University of Liverpool, working with a global healthcare company, have helped develop a new treatment for obesity.
New Protein Found in Immune Cells
Immunobiologists from the University of Freiburg discover Kidins220/ARMS in B cells and demonstrate its functions.
Will Brain Palpation Soon Be Possible?
Researchers have developed non-invasive brain imaging technique which provides the same information as physical palpation.
Shaking Up the Foundations of Epigenetics
Researchers at the Centre for Genomic Regulation (CRG) and the University of Barcelona (UB) published a study that challenges some of the current beliefs about epigenetics.
Groundbreaking Computer Program Diagnoses Cancer in Two Days
Researchers have combined genetics with computer science and created a new diagnostic technology can with 85 per cent certainty identify the source of the disease and thus target treatment and, ultimately, improve the prognosis for the patient.
Scroll Up
Scroll Down
Skyscraper Banner

Skyscraper Banner
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
2,600+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
3,800+ scientific videos