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Ahmed Mudawi Musa Mohamed is a professor of immunology and a physician (MRCPI) specialist in Internal Medicine, Infectious Diseases and Tropical Medicine. Professor Musa has cumulative experience in vaccines and new treatment modalities development for visceral leishmaniasis and Post kala-azar dermal leishmaniasis as an immunologist and a clinical Trialist. He joined the Institute of Endemic Diseases, university of Khartoum in 2000 and since that he has been working as an immunologist and a clinician in the endemic diseases in both tertiary and primary care setting. Professor Musa was recently (31 Jan 2019) appointed as Honorary Professor in the Hull York Medical School (HYMS) in the United Kingdom. He is now giving specialist consultations in the diagnosis and management of various infectious diseases in Sudan. He promoted many MSc and Ph D students in immunology of infectious diseases mainly leishmaniasis and tuberculosis, virology and schistosomiasis. He was qualified in the University of Khartoum, university of London, the Royal College of Physicians in London and Ireland. He was the director of the institute of Endemic Diseases, University of Khartoum since Jan 2011 to December 2019 and the head of the department of clinical pathology & Immunology. Professor Musa is a regular speaker in local, regional and international medical and scientific conferences. His published work changed the guidelines of treatment of leishmaniasis. He published almost 100 publications in reputable journals (Researchgate.net, Ahmed Mudawi Musa) mainly on immunology, infectious and tropical diseases.

Dr. Sahar M. Bakhiet is currently the head department of Molecular biology at the Institute of Endemic diseases and research coordinator at the Mycetoma Research Centre – University of Khartoum. Her research activities have included the immunology and molecular biology of different neglected diseases with special emphasis on Mycetoma and Leishmaniasis. She has published widely in this area and her publications range from epidemiology and basic science through to community engagement projects. She is supervising M.Sc ad Ph.D. students in this field and participates in different training programs.

Additionally, she is participating in the first-ever clinical trial in Mycetoma funded by DNDi and is responsible for all the laboratory management. Dr Sahar also is working as on major grant funding for two significant programmes of global health research funded by NIHR UK. Moreover, she is an active member of the Global Mycetoma Working Group.

In addition to her scientific work, Dr. Sahar has extensive reach within the public community through her public engagement activities to which she is highly committed.

Dr. Wendy W.J.van de Sande

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Wendy W.J. van de Sande is Associate Professor at the Department of Medical Microbiology & Infectious Diseases of Erasmus MC, University Medical Center Rotterdam, The Netherlands. Since 2001, Wendy van de Sande collaborated with the Mycetoma Research Centre. Wendy van de Sande is fellow of the European Confederation of Medical Mycology and member of the steering committee of the Global Mycetoma Working Group and convener of the eumycetoma working group under the umbrella of the International Society of Human and Animal Mycoses.  She is also vice-chair of the Skin NTD subgroup of the WHO Diagnostic Technical Advisory Group for Neglected Tropical Diseases.

The research of Wendy van de Sande focusses on the development of novel diagnostic tools for mycetoma as well as the identification of novel drugs for fungal mycetoma. She developed DNA isolation methods, classical and isothermal molecular identification tools to identify mycetoma causative agents to the species level and typing techniques such as MmySTR to be able to study the world-wide epidemiology of Madurella mycetomatis, the main causative agent of human mycetoma.

To identify novel drugs for mycetoma she developed in vitro susceptibility assays and invertebrate infection models. She demonstrated that M. mycetomatis was most susceptible towards ravuconazole, the drug currently investigated in the DNDi sponsored clinical trial. She is also co-founder of the Mycetoma Open Source Drug discovery platform (MycetOS) in which chemists and biologists jointly develop new medication for eumycetoma.

Prof. Alexandro Bonifaz

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Prof Bonifaz got great interest in mycetoma as it is a common condition in Mexico, and it has many impacts on patients in affected endemic regions. In Mexico it is commonly actinomycetoma caused Nocardia and Actinomadure species. He worked extensively on actinomycetes, especially on Nocardia brasiliensis and other species. Also, he studied the actinomycetoma epidemiology, diagnosis and he reported on new treatments with first-line antibiotics. He reported on the largest epidemiological study on mycetoma in Mexico,
He currently developing in vitro susceptibility test for Nocardia strains, isolated from mycetoma and nocardiosis. With regard to eumycetoma, he had worked together with Dr. van de Sande of Erasmus medical centre on the most accurate identification test for cryptic strains of mycetoma agents in Mexico, some of them are different from those reported in Africa.

Prof Jeff Errington

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Prof Jeff Errington FMedSci FRS has spent much of his research career studying fundamental questions about the structure and function of bacterial cells. During 25 years at the University of Oxford, latterly as Professor of Microbiology at the Sir William Dunn School of Pathology, he made important contributions to our understanding of the molecular biology underpinning endospore formation in Bacillus subtilis.

More recently he has contributed substantially to our understanding of chromosome replication and segregation, cell division and cell morphogenesis in bacteria. His lab was one of the pioneers in the application of digital fluorescence imaging methods to bacteria. He is presently founding Director of the Centre for Bacterial Cell Biology at Newcastle University in the UK, which was the world’s first major research centre focused specifically on the molecular and cellular biology of bacterial cells.

Errington’s contributions to basic science have been recognized by election to various learned societies, including Fellowship of the Royal Society, EMBO, the UK Academy of Medical Sciences and both the European and American Academies of Microbiology. His recent academic work has been funded by successive major grants from the European Research Council and the Wellcome Trust.

The mechanisms underlying essential cellular functions in bacteria include many essential proteins that are actual or potential targets for antibiotics. Errington’s work has generated opportunities for discovery of novel antibiotics, which have been pursued through two spin out companies, Prolysis Ltd and now Newcastle-based Demuris Ltd.

In the last 10 years or so Errington has turned his attention to actinobacteria, as fascinating examples of complex adaptive evolution in the bacterial domain and sources of important bioactive “natural product” molecules. This work led to an interest in actinomycetoma and an extremely interesting and now productive collaboration with Prof Fahal’s group at the MRC in Khartoum.