Collen Masimirembwa

Honorary Prof. of Clinical Pharmacology,, University of Cape Town

I am a Biochemical Pharmacologist trained at the University of Zimbabwe (BSc) and at the Karolinska Institute, Sweden (PhD). After a 2 year postdoctoral fellowship at Uppsala University (Sweden) I worked for 10 years at AstraZeneca, Sweden, as a Principal Scientist in Pharmacokinetics and Bioanalytics. With the help of industry and international organizations, I founded the African Institute of Biomedical Science and Technology (AiBST) with the aim of promoting the sciences and technologies of drug discovery and development in Africa. I am currently the President and Chief Scientific Officer of AiBST. I have over 75 original publications in peer reviewed journals, 5 book chapters and co-edited a book on Drug Discovery in Africa. I have conducted pioneering work in predictive pharmacokinetics and pharmacogenetics in preclinical and clinical drug discovery research, contributions which have been recognized through various awards, memberships to various international organizations, expert consultancy to companies & organization such as WHO, and invitations to make keynote presentations at international meetings. I have a passion for training postgraduates and have trained 10 PhD students and several masters students to completion. I believe that innovative hybridization of industrial and academic approaches has a chance to jumpstart biomedical developments in Africa.

Over 20 years experience in genetics, genomics, bioanalytical chemistry and drug discovery & development research. Published over 80 original research papers in international peer reviewed journals, 5 book chapters and co-edited a book on Drug Discovery & Development in Africa published by Springer.
A Principal Scientist at AstraZeneca Pharmaceutical Company (1998-2007) and founding President and Chief Scientific Officer of the African Institute of Biomedical Science and Technology (2002 -2007 part time, 2007-now full time). Honorary Professor of Clinical Pharmacology at the University of Cape Town (South Africa), Visiting Lecturer at the University of Nairobi and Part-time Lecturer at the University of Zimbabwe. Consultant Scientist for three major international Pharmaceutical companies.
 Discovered the genetic basis of defect metabolic capacity of African populations for many medicines in clinical use
 Founded the first integrated drug discovery and development institute in Africa, AiBST, which was selected as a centre of excellence by WHO-TDR and by the African Network for Drugs and Diagnostics Innovation (ANDi)
 Established the first and currently only DNA Testing Laboratory in Zimbabwe
 Training of postgraduates (MSc & PhD) scientists
 Genomic Medicine Research in HIV, TB, Malaria, Schistosomiasis, Cancer, and Cardiovascular Disease.
 Certificate of Distinction in Biochemistry by the Government of Zimbabwe
 Fellow of the Zimbabwe Academy of Sciences (ZAS)
 Fellow of the African Academy of Sciences (AAS)
 Many awards for research presented at national and international conferences
 Research & Education Grants from international organizations including WHO, CDC, TWAS, EU, EDCTP, AstraZeneca, Merck, Novartis and ISP

Experience

  • –present
    Honorary Prof. of Clinical Pharmacology,, University of Cape Town