Dr. Rodrick S. Katete
BSc, BSc with Honours, (Wits, RSA), MPhil, Ph.D. (Sheff., UK), Postdoctoral Research Fellow (University of Cape Town, RSA)
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Lecturer
The University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa
The University of Sheffield, Sheffield, United Kingdom
The University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa
Principal Investigator in Molecular Medicine Research Group
Reviewer of the To Physics Journal
Reviewer of the Academia Biology Journal
Lecturing, Research, Consultancy, Supervision, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship
Faculty of Science, Technology and Innovation
Adjunct Molecular Biology and Biochemistry Lecturer
MSc Infectious Diseases
Molecular Cell Biology (MCB 812) Lecturer
Medical Virology (IDM 803) Lecturer
Consultant for BSc Medical Microbiology Curriculum Development
Nutritional Biochemistry Lecturer
Executive Dean of the School of Mathematics and Natural Sciences
Bringing Education to Life
Associate Professor of Biology and Medical Microbiology
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
MPhil and PhD
BSc, BSc Hons and MSc
University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate (UCLES)
AS and A Levels
Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Geography
Limbe Central High International School, Limbe, Blantyre, Malawi
Founder of the upcoming Afromics Medical Biotechnology Startup Company
Collaborations with Prof Stephen Baldwin Research Group
Mass Spectroscopy Training
Engineering with Associate Professor in Railway Systems Engineering & Integration Associate Prof Flex Schmid and Dr Charles Watson
Learning Without Limits
Dr. Rodrick S. Katete Websites: : https://www.rskatete.info/
BSc, BSc Hons, MPhil, Ph.D. E-mails: email@example.com
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Lecturer firstname.lastname@example.org
Tel/WhatsApp/Telegram/Microsoft Teams: +265 991 40 54 95
Dr. R. S. Katete's current research interest is in Medical Parasitology, focusing on a parasite's protein structure and function (Structural Parasitology). The main focus will be on Plasmodium falciparum to elucidate new drug targets and improve malaria diagnosis. The projects are designed to provide detailed molecular mechanisms of tRNA importers of Plasmodium falciparum mitochondria, proteins involved in secretory pathways of Plasmodium falciparum, immune evasion mechanism (currently there is no vaccine for malaria), and protein glycosylation patterns at different stages of the parasite life cycle. Further studies will provide clinical biomarkers for drug discovery, development, and malaria diagnosis.
With the increase in drug resistance to almost all malaria drugs, there is an urgent need to develop new drug targets. Antimicrobial peptides currently target every stage of the Plasmodium falciparum life cycle. Projects will be designed to provide detailed molecular mechanisms of synthetic and natural antimicrobial peptides targeting Plasmodium falciparum and its transmission vector, the mosquito.
A project has been designed to improve protein expression levels in heterologous systems to provide alternatives to codon optimization.
Rodrick did his Postdoctoral Research Fellowship (Carnegie Corporation of New York Postdoctoral Fellow) in Dr. Zenda Woodman’s HIV: Structure-Function and Viral Fitness Research Group at the University of Cape Town, Department of Molecular and Cell Biology. He was working on the molecular mechanisms involved in the transmission of HIV, focusing on the gp140 envelope protein trimers. The project involved the expression, purification, biophysical, biochemical, and antigenicity analysis of gp140 trimers from transmitter/founder and chronic viruses and pseudovirus neutralization assays that could pave the way for HIV preclinical and clinical vaccine trials. Experiments were designed to understand the role of envelope N-glycosylation in viral fitness. A panel of site-directed glycosylation mutants was generated to investigate the role of specific potential glycosylation sites in transmission.
Rodrick graduated from the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, School of Molecular and Cell Biology, with double BSc Majors in Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Microbiology and Biotechnology in 2005, BSc with Honours in Biochemistry and Cell Biology in 2006 under the supervision of Dr. Jonathan Burke in the Protein Structure-Function Research Programme headed by Prof Heinrich Dirr. He then started MSc in Molecular and Cell Biology research course under the supervision of Prof Monde Ntwasa in 2007. He moved to Krebs Institute of Biomolecular Research, University of Sheffield, Department of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, United Kingdom, registering as an MPhil research student in 2008, then upgraded to Ph.D. in 2009, supervised by Prof David P. Hornby with Prof C. Neil Hunter FRS -Krebs Chair in Biochemistry and Prof Stuart A.Wilson - Roper Chair in Genetics as his advisors. He completed his Ph.D. program on September 30, 2011, and was awarded a Ph.D. on November 2, 2011. He graduated with a Ph.D. on January 12, 2012.
New generation: (l-r) Back row; Faridah Chebet Chemisto, Kabani Matongo, AdÃrijo Monjane, Aleyo Chabeda and Brian Kullin. Third row; Philemon Arito, David Fadiran, Yusuf Agabi, Sulemana Mahawiya, Imuentinyan Aivinhenyo, David Ikumi, Roslyn Ray and Adeola Oyenubi. Second row; John Okedi, Rodrick Katete, Fredrick Nindo, Munya Musvosvi, Trust Mpofu, Hazvinei Tsitsi Tamuka Moyo, Krupa Naran and Zanele Ditse. Front row; Threza Mtenga, Mamello Nchake, Chijioke Nwosu, Elizabeth Lwanga Nanziri, Mhbuba Shifa and Nina Wasuna.
It is no longer enough to "work, finish and publish", a new generation of Carnegie scholars were told at a gathering last week.
Dr Digby Warner was quoting the C19th chemist and physicist Michael Faraday at the Annual Orientation Cocktail of the "Next Generation of Academics in Africa" project.
Faraday's "secret" to being a successful academic is no longer useful amid the deluge of information we face in our "noise-rich" era, Warner argued.
Today's academics need to engage on social media, maintain their "altmetrics" (alternative metrics to the widely used journal impact factor/personal citation indices such as the h-index), with a pace that is getting faster and faster. At the same time as keeping up with research in their field and publishing in an environment where they are fighting for air time.
The competition is not just faced by individuals, but by universities, countries and entire continents, argued Professor Danie Visser: "You can't be competitive as a country or a continent if you don't have strong universities that drive research."
It was to meet these challenges that the Next Generation of Academics in Africa was formed. Funded by the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the project is intended to strengthen postgraduate research and training through the partnership universities: UCT, Makerere University (Uganda), the Universities of Ghana and the Witwatersrand.
Over the length of the project almost 100 new academics will be produced for the continent, Visser told the assembled scholars. "We are trying to foster a community of people so that we can get that sense that we are doing something very important for our continent."
While the speakers at the event stressed how tough it is forging an academic career in today's climate, they also urged the scholars before them to step back and appreciate it. "It involves a lot of travel, new ideas, some prestige and a huge opportunity to contribute to your community and your country," said Warner, a Carnegie supervisor.
A quick scan of Africa-specific research being undertaken by current Carnegie scholars demonstrates the importance of the work for the continent. Projects range from the economics of tobacco control in Zambia, to property rights in Nigeria; from climate change vulnerability in Tanzania to the relationship between health and the labour market in South Africa, and include multiple research projects on malaria, TB and HIV/Aids.
There was no doubt from the speakers that the Carnegie programme has multiple benefits. Dr David Ikumi, a graduate of the Carnegie programme who has recently been offered a post as Senior Lecturer in UCT's Department of Civil Engineering, attested to his own involvement: "I often get asked at conferences about Africa and how we are progressing with our research, and I realise the importance of all these research communities that are being formed in Africa to deal with the unique conditions we have here, and the importance of our role as academics to facilitate such communities."
The Carnegie experience had also benefited him as an individual, he said: "It has propelled me towards the achievement of my career ambitions and I wish the same luck to you, that as Carnegie scholars you may come to achieve your academic and career goals."
Story by Carolyn Newton. Image by Michael Hammon