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  • Pauline Byakika-Kibwika, winner of the HIVRT alumni scholarship to attend the HIV Drug Therapy Congress, Glasgow, 2018.



    HIV Research Trust alumni were asked to complete a survey describing how their HIVRT scholarship had impacted their professional and academic lives allowing Trustees to better understand how it affected patient outcomes in the scholar’s home setting. The Trustees assessed all survey responses and selected Pauline to receive the above award. Her story is summarised below.

    In 2010 Pauline attended a placement at Mahidol University, Thailand to obtain clinical pharmacology analytical skills to assist her in completing her PhD. Pauline’s PhD work contributed to the current knowledge on treatment of malaria in HIV-infected patients who are also receiving antiretroviral treatment. This work has been utilised and referenced by the World Health Organization in the current policy on treatment of malaria in HIV-infected individuals.

    After completion of her PhD, she was promoted to Associate Professor and currently heads the Infectious Diseases Unit at the Department of Medicine of Makerere University College of Health Sciences, Kampala, Uganda where they care for those who are affected with HIV and opportunistic infections - more than 200 HIV-infected inpatients and over 300 outpatients are seen each month.

    Pauline is also the Director of the Research Directorate at Makerere where her responsibilities include reviewing and guiding the research framework at the Department of Medicine and supervising Masters and PhD students’ research projects.
  • Current Scholars

    Aggrey Anok, Data Management Officer at Rakai Health Sciences Program, Kalisizo, Uganda

    To visit the Office of Cyber Infrastructure and Computational Biology, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institute of Health, Maryland, USA.  The training will enhance the scholar’s data management skills set specifically in the areas of creating and managing central data repositories and application of data standards and practices that facilitate production of high quality data.  The training will also enable a better understanding of a research study lifecycle.  The acquired skills and knowledge are to be applied to daily work routines and future research studies and to mentoring junior staff through training to enable them to execute their roles more proficiently.

    Hemalatha Babu, Research Scholar at the National Institute for Research in Tuberculosis, Chennai, India

    To visit the Karolinska Institute, Department of Medicine, Unit of Infection and Dermatology, Stockholm, Sweden to investigate immunological senescence and premature aging in HIV-infected individuals on long-term Anti-Retroviral Therapy (ART).  The scholarship will enable the scholar to perform state-of-art experiments to understand the pathophysiology of persistent HIV infection and long-term ART whilst refining methodologies and learning newer techniques to enhance the quality of their research and gain new insights to expand research objectives.

    Allan Buzibye, Laboratory Technologist at the Infectious Diseases Unit, Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda

    To visit The Department of Molecular and Clinical Pharmacology, University of Liverpool, UK to train in the laboratory techniques required for pharmacogenetics analysis.  The home institution has a large whole blood repository with samples of disengaged mothers on an Option B plus study. The aim of this research is to translate laboratory findings into the clinic for the benefit of patients, the public and the healthcare system.

    Chido Dziva Chikwari, Study Coordinator and Research Fellow at the Biomedical Research and Training Institute, Harare, Zimbabwe

    To visit the Health Economics Research Group (HERG), Brunel University, London, UK to attend a course on economic evaluation in health care including costing methods and practice and frameworks for designing an economic evaluation.  The scholar will also complete an 11-week placement on design and development of a PhD cost analysis. The scholar’s project aims to investigate a multi-component intervention aimed at improving uptake of HIV testing and engagement with HIV care among children aged 2-18 years. On completion of the scholarship, the scholar will design the study protocol and tools to ensure effective and efficient overall running of all project activities, conduct the data analysis and write up findings. The project will also go on to offer community based support to children who are identified to be HIV positive through targeted testing. The training will also strengthen capacity in the home institution where the scholar will mentor and train students and young epidemiologists.

    Werner Maokola, Medical Officer at the National AIDS Control Program, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

    To visit London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, London, UK to attend a short course on evaluating interventions.  The course will build on core concepts of scientific research, study design and critical appraisal taught in the core modules and the scholar will learn how to choose appropriate methods of monitoring and evaluation whilst gaining an understanding of cutting-edge methods in evaluation science.

    Sylvia Nanono, Study Coordinator at MRC/UVRI Uganda Research Unit, Entebbe, Uganda

    To visit KIT Royal Tropical Institute, Amsterdam,The Netherlands to undertake training in sexual and reproductive health research (SRHR) in HIV/AIDS.  This course will help analyse SRH issues and concepts and enable the scholar to design and conduct high quality intervention studies to determine the most cost-effective strategies for providing SRH services in Uganda.  The scholar aims to utilise the research experience coupled with knowledge gained from the training to establish a successful research project in SRH at their unit – this is a research area which has not yet been explored at the home institution.

    Kennedy Ngowi, ICT Administrator & Study Coordinator at the Kilimanjaro Clinical Research Institute, Kilimanjaro, Tanzania

    To visit Academic Medical Center Graduate School, Amsterdam, The Netherlands for advanced training on understanding scientific procedures to coordinate HIV clinical studies.  This will assist with the scholar’s PhD on improving adherence to ART exploiting the large use of mobile phones. The training will assist with identifying systematic concepts, working guidelines and tools to manage PhD research.

    Anne Njoroge, Research Coordinator (epidemiologist) at the Kenyatta National Hospital, Nairobi, Kenya

    To visit University of Washington School of Public Health, Department of Biostatistics, Seattle, USA to undertake taught courses on advanced statistical methods for survival data and regression methods for correlated data. The aim is to learn the theory and application of statistical methods used in analysis of longitudinal data.  Mastery of techniques that can be used to analyse this data correctly will allow the scholar and the home institution to analyse existing cohort data and make clearer scientific inferences that can be used as evidence to evaluate the impact that some of their interventions have had on clinical outcomes. The scholarship will also help the scholar complete their PhD research dissertation focusing on screening, risk factors and outcomes of diabetes mellitus and dyslipidemia among HIV-infected adults in central Kenya.

    Primrose Nyamayaro, Doctoral Fellow at the University of Zimbabwe, College of Health Sciences Department of Psychiatry, Harare, Zimbabwe

    To visit Department of Psychiatry and Mental Health, University of Cape Town, South Africa to conduct data analysis on HIV associated neurocognitive disorders from their PhD and to attend neuropsychology classes. This will provide a good theoretical background to neuropsychology and will enable the scholar to complete data analysis and subsequently write-up a manuscript for publication and will contribute to the write-up of their PhD thesis.

    Sithembile Ruzariro, Research Compliance Officer at the Medical Research Council for Zimbabwe, Harare, Zimbabwe

    To visit University of Witswatersrand, Braamfontein, South Africa to attend training on bioethics and research methods. The course aims to develop capacity and excellence in the ethical and legal analysis of issues arising in health care and research. On completion, the scholar will be able to apply their knowledge to the evaluation and management of bioethical and medico-legal problems and to propose solutions that are ethically acceptable and within the constraints of the law. The scholar will use the acquired knowledge and skills as a kick start for PhD research on protection of research participants including HIV positive participants.

    Wende Clarence Safari, Junior Biostatistician at the National Institute of Medical Research (NIMR), Mwanza, Tanzania

    To visit Africa Health Research Institute (AHRI), Durban, South Africa to work with researchers in epidemiological modelling and analysing longitudinal HIV data.   The scholar will learn techniques for analysis and interpretation of advanced statistics, concepts in causal models, clustered data, missing data and joint modelling. They will observe how AHRI conduct large epidemiological studies and will gain new ideas in both data management and analysis and learn how to manage, analyse and interpret data collected at routine clinics and large survey data on HIV. The knowledge and experience obtained will be useful in building analytical skills, applying and interpreting advanced statistics and helping to advise and train other researchers at the home institution.

    Uroosa Tariq, Research Associate at the Department of Biochemistry, University of Karachi, Pakistan

    To visit Systems Virology Group, Department of Laboratory Medicine, Lund University, Lund, Sweden   to learn and apply techniques pertaining to molecular virology and phylogenetics for deeper analysis of HIV evolution and its replicative fitness under immune escape mutations.  The scholar will be trained in advance molecular phylogeny tools and techniques that can be applied to understand HIV subtype A evolution in different populations.  The training will also help bring useful knowledge and skills in bioinformatics, molecular biology, and cell culture to Pakistan thus working towards establishing the area of molecular phylogeny in Pakistan.

    Marta Vasylyev, MD Infectious Diseases at the Lviv Regional AIDS Center, Lviv, Ukraine

    To visit The Fundació Lluita contra la Sida (FLS- Fight AIDS Foundation), Catalonia, Spain to gain experience and acquire the knowledge and skills to carry out translational research and study of the mutations caused by resistance to treatment in HIV/HCV coinfected patients. The scholar will develop translational research questions that are relevant for their clinical setting and the research protocols addressing HIV HCV/HBV coinfection, which will then be implemented in their centre.  The course will help the scholar with the capacity and expertise to plan and implement PhD work in Ukraine.

    Clauvis Kunkeng Yengo, PhD Student, Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Science at the University of Yaounde, Yaounde, Cameroon

    To visit University of Oxford, Nuffield Department of Medicine, Oxford, UK to gain hands-on training on Killer Cell Immunoglobulin-like Receptor and Human Leucocyte Antigen Class I allele genotyping and analysis with association to HIV-1 disease pathogenesis and genotype and analyse samples from Cameroon for the scholar’s PhD thesis.

    2018/19 TIMELINE

    • 2019 scholarships announced late December 2018

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    HOW TO APPLY

    If you are interested in applying for a scholarship find out more below:

    HOW TO APPLY

    AM I ELIGIBLE TO APPLY?

    The scholarships are for health care professionals in early/mid-career who are located in resource-limited settings from low-income and lower-middle-income countries working in the field of HIV infection. Read more to see if you are eligible.