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Professor Hannah Akuffo has a research background of immunology of
leprosy and leishmaniasis. She is Lead Specialist, Research Cooperation, at
the Swedish International development Agency (Sida) and adjunct professor
of Parasitology at Karolinska Institutet (KI).
Hannah had the privilege to start the research cooperation between Sida and
Makerere University in 1999 when the University was trying to emerge from a
major crisis. Long term financial support to enhance the research capacity at
the university at all levels where it was needed, has contributed to Makerere
University’s current possibility to assert its role as a prominent university with
enhanced research capacity. Today interaction between the university and
small businesses through “innovation clusters” has demonstrated the potential
role of the Universities working with small businesses in the country. These
results are replicated in other countries with which Sida has research cooperation.
As a representative of Sida, Hannah has served as the Swedish representative in the General Assembly
of EDCTP from the onset of the organisation (for 4 years as the chairperson. She previously served as
the Chairperson of the European Malaria Vaccine Initiative (EMVI). She has been part of the ESSENCE
on Health Research initiative from the initiation of this collaboration amongst funders of research for
health and has had the position of chairperson. She has served in various research steering committees
of the World Bank/UNDP/WHO Special programme on Tropical Disease Research and Training (TDR),
including 5 years as the chairperson of the Research Strengthening Group of TDR, 6 years as a
member of TDR’s Scientific and Technical Advisory Committee, and from 2014 to date as the
Chairperson of the TDR governing organ, the Joint coordinating Board.
Hannah currently serves on scientific committees of DFG (the German Research Foundation), MUII2
(Makerere University /UVRI Centre of Excellence Infection and Immunity Research and Training) as
well as the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) “Research Networks for
Health Innovations in Sub-Saharan Africa”
Hannah’s passion remains research capacity strengthening in low income countries .
Professor Karl Hoffmann
Professor of Parasitology
Leader, Parasitology and Epidemiology Research group
Director, Barrett Center for Helminth Control
IBERS, Aberystwyth University
Professor Hoffmann holds the Aberystwyth University Chair of Parasitology
at the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS),
having relocated in 2007 from the Department of Pathology, University of
Since joining IBERS, Professor Hoffmann has instigated the formation of the Parasitology and
Epidemiology (PE) Research Group and has recently directed the development of a new
interdisciplinary research center in helminth control (the Barrett Center for Helminth Control, BCHC).
He is an editor for Parasitology International and currently serves on the Welsh Government Life
Sciences National Research Network’s management and executive boards.
Professor Hoffmann directs a laboratory team working on strategies to control helminths (blood and
liver flukes) of biomedical, veterinary and zoonotic importance. Here, using functional genomics as well
as classical molecular and biochemical techniques, his team attempts to provide new insights into
developmental biology, epigenetics, bilateral symmetry, immune-evasion, sexual reproduction and
organogenesis. His laboratory has, to date, been awarded research funding from BBSRC, the European
Union, the Welsh Government, the Wellcome Trust, the Nuffield Trust, Innovate UK, Pfizer Animal
Health (Zoetis) and the Sandler Center for Parasitological Research. As part of current translational
activities using the Roboworm high-throughput drug discovery platform, Professor Hoffmann welcomes
the opportunity to engage with other investigators in the search for new anthelmintics effective against
both blood (Schistosoma sp) and liver (Fasciola hepatica) flukes.
Greg Bancroft is Programme Director of the MSc Immunology of Infectious Diseases and currently
Head of the Department of Immunology and Infection. His research relates to understanding the
mechanisms of pathogenesis and the development of novel vaccines against two important
pathogenic bacteria, M. tuberculosis and B. pseudomallei. His work in tuberculosis relates to the
provision of independent, head to head, safety and efficacy testing in murine models
of candidate TB vaccines through the EU funded TBVAC programme.
He uses similar approaches of experimental modelling, cell mediated immunity and imaging in studies
on the causative agent of melioidosis (B. pseudomallei), an important cause of septic death in rural
Thailand and Northern Australia. This work is done primarily with a long standing collaboration with
colleagues at Khon Kaen University in the endemic region of Thailand who study human immune
responses to this organism and at both Mahidol and Chulalongkorn Universities on melioidosis and