Dr Ahmed Abd El Wahed received his PhD in biology from Göttingen University in Germany in 2011. He is currently the Lab Head at the Institute of Animal Hygiene and Veterinary Public Health at Leipzig University. He is a member of the German Society for Tropical Medicine, Travel Medicine and Global Health (DTG, e.V.), and the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH), and he is also one of the founders of the Young Researchers in Medical Infectious Diseases Network (Netzwerk Junge Infektionsmedizin) and the African Society for Paratuberculosis. In 2013, he was awarded the ASTMH’s Young Investigator Award for the establishment of a mobile laboratory for the rapid detection of haemorrhagic fever viruses at low resource settings. He has also established a mobile suitcase laboratory for the rapid detection of viruses, bacteria and parasites. This mobile setup has been deployed in many African and Asian countries.
Prof George Olusegun Ademowo is a Professor of Pharmacology and Therapeutics at the Institute for Advanced Medical Research and Training and the Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics in the College of Medicine at the University of Ibadan, Nigeria. His research focuses on the genetics and pathogenesis of malaria, drug discovery and disposition kinetics and clinical trials. He also works on immune responses to infectious agents including helminths, malaria, and HIV. He is involved in the development of diagnostics and the establishment of a mobile laboratory for multiple testing and the detection of pathogens using the Recombinase Polymerase Amplification (RPA) technique. He collaborates with the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) in Chevy Chase, USA, on the isolation, sequence characterization and annotation of bacteriophages, and with the University of Leipzig in Germany and other institutions on the use of the mobile suitcase laboratory for diagnosing SARS COV-2, with funding from European Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnerships (EDCTP).
Prof Ademowo has won a number of research grants from local and international agencies such as Nigeria’s National Biotechnology Development Agency, the World Health Organization, the European Commission, the World Bank and various pharmaceutical companies. He is a visiting professor and/or research scientist at over twenty institutions within Africa, Europe and America, and has won several fellowships and awards, including the Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship, the Malaria Vaccine Advocacy Fellowship and the Volkswagen Scholarship.
Dr Leonel Aguilar is a lecturer and postdoctoral researcher in applied artificial intelligence at the Data Science, Data Systems, & Data Services laboratory (DS3) at ETH Zurich. Previously, he has held postdoctoral appointments at the Cognitive Science group (COG) and the Computational Social Science group (COSS) at ETH Zurich and the research centre for Large-Scale Earthquake, Tsunami and Disaster (LsETD, now CESERI) at the Earthquake Research Institute of the University of Tokyo, Japan. Dr Aguilar obtained his PhD in the Computational Science and High-Performance Computing Laboratory at the University of Tokyo. Previously, he held a principal lecturer appointment at the Universidad del Valle, Guatemala, in both the mathematics and civil engineering departments.
Dr Aguilar’s research focuses on modelling, simulating and analysing social phenomena and the development and deployment of AI/ML-based systems to support this. He has built systems to analyse AI-driven software agents in artificial worlds in VR (virtual reality) experiments to quantify human behaviour. Dr Aguilar has contributed to systems that make ML (machine learning) more accessible for non-experts while ensuring best practices. In this context, he has contributed to Easeml/AutoML, an automatic ML system that he has helped to integrate into the Swiss Data Science Center’s Renku data science service. He has also contributed to Easeml/CI&CD, a system for continuously integrating and delivering ML models.
|Milagros Alvarado Llatance studied psychology at Cayetano Heredia University in Peru. She is a member of the DIAS Unit at Cayetano Heredia University and has experience in evaluating early childhood development in rural areas. She is interested in the field of early childhood development, risk factors associated with developmental delay and especially in early childhood intervention programmes.|
Dr Alain Amstutz is part of the BRCCH-funded MistraL project, which investigates mitigation strategies for the COVID-19 pandemic in Lesotho. He is responsible for community-based intervention and supports the implementation of the project in the districts.
Dr Amstutz is a physician by training and is currently enrolled in a PhD (Clinical Research) at the University of Basel and the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH), which is funded by the SNSF/SAMW MD-PhD scholarship. His research focuses on how to control the HIV epidemic in Lesotho using innovative methods assessed in randomized trials, such as HIV self-testing, decentralization of ART delivery and differentiated service delivery for adolescents. Furthermore, one of his randomized controlled trials investigates low-level viremia in order to challenge the current WHO definition of virologic failure. He is eager to leverage lessons learned from the HIV epidemic for the COVID-19 response.
Dr Amstutz has been living in Lesotho for more than three years. He has fallen in love with the country and its people and still enjoys papa le moroho.
Dr Filipe Barata is a postdoctoral researcher at the Centre for Digital Health Interventions (CDHI) at ETH Zurich, where he serves as the Core Director for AI & Digital Biomarker, Acoustic and Inflammatory Biomarkers.
Filipe holds a diploma (M.Sc.) in electrical engineering and information technology and a PhD (Dr. Sc.) in applied machine Learning in healthcare from ETH Zurich. In his professional career he gained experience in several research laboratories, including the Department of Biomedical Data Science at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth College (USA), the research department of Bruker BioSpin, and the R&D department of LMS International (Siemens).
For his doctoral thesis entitled "Enabling a Digital Biomarker for Asthma – Smartphone Contact-Free Audio-based Nocturnal Cough Monitoring", he developed a smartphone-based system for monitoring cough in patients with asthma. This research led to two software publications, a patent and the founding of the startup Resmonics AG, which offers respiratory disease monitoring with clinically validated biomarkers.
In his research, he investigates the potential of mobile technologies such as wearable sensors, mobile applications, social media and location-tracking technologies for the monitoring and self-management of people with chronic diseases (also known in the relevant literature as “digital biomarkers”).
Rasa Barkauskiene, PhD is a Professor in the Clinical Psychology program and a Head of the Developmental Psychopathology Research Center at the Institute of Psychology of Vilnius University, Lithuania. Her scientific interests include developmental psychopathology, childhood traumatic experiences, personality and mentalization development in adolescence. Since 2016, she has been leading a research program on understanding personality pathology and its developmental course in young people. She has extensive experience in research implementation and international cooperation which she has gained through participation in several international scientific collaborations, leading national research projects and supervising doctoral research. In addition to academic work, she has been working in assessment of dyslexia and other developmental disorders, counselling and therapeutic work with adolescents, young people and families for more than 20 years.
Prof Stefano Bassetti is Head of the Division of Internal Medicine at University Hospital Basel and a professor of internal medicine at the University of Basel. Within the frame of this project, he has clinical oversight of the COVID patient ward. Prof Bassetti graduated in medicine from the University of Zürich, where he was also a doctoral researcher in the Institute for Immunology and Virology. He started his clinical training as a resident in paediatrics at La Carità hospital in Locarno and was then a resident and fellow in internal medicine and infectious diseases in Lugano, Lucerne and University Hospital Basel. He worked for two years as an infectious diseases research fellow at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, USA, on vascular catheter-related infections and the airborne transmission of Staphylococcus aureus and then returned to University Hospital Basel as a senior physician, first in internal medicine and then in infectious diseases. From 2006 to 2014, he was Head of the Department of Medicine at the Cantonal Hospital of Olten. He is a board certified specialist in internal medicine and infectious diseases and is actively involved in medical education and clinical training on a national and European level as Chair of the Board of Postgraduate Education of the Swiss Society of General Internal Medicine, a member of the Board of the Swiss Institute for Postgraduate and Continuing Education in Medicine (SIWF) and a Swiss representative in the European Federation of Internal Medicine. His main research focus is on clinical projects aimed at improving diagnostics and treatment, particularly in hospitalized multimorbid patients, and on the field of infectious diseases.
Prof Matthias Baumgartner is a Professor of Metabolic Diseases at the University of Zürich (UZH). He is Head of the Division of Metabolic Diseases, Medical Director of the Swiss newborn screening programme and Director of the Children’s Research Center at University Children’s Hospital Zürich. Prof Baumgartner is an internationally renowned metabolic paediatrician and scientist with a main research interest in disorders of intracellular cobalamin metabolism including homocystinurias and methylmalonic acidurias. He is a member of the steering committees of the European Network and Registry for Homocystinurias and Methylation Defects (E-HOD; www.e-hod.org) and the European Registry and Network of Intoxication Type Metabolic Diseases (E-IMD; www.e-imd.org) and also an editor of the Journal of Inherited Metabolic Disease. At UZH, he initiated the Rare Disease Initiative Zurich (radiz) Clinical Research Priority Program, which was followed by the Innovative Therapies in Rare Diseases (ITINERARE) University Research Priority Program, of which he is a co-director.
Philippe Bechtold is a member of the peakPCR project. He is currently a PhD student in Prof Wendelin Stark’s group at the Institute for Chemical and Bioengineering (IBC) at ETH Zurich. His research stretches from coatings of metal surfaces for digital PCR applications to the development of PCR assays for the detection of different diseases. He joined the peakPCR project two years ago and has since engineered the ready-to-use consumables and the sample preparation steps. He holds an MSc degree in chemical engineering from ETH Zurich and has spent an exchange semester at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the USA.
Olivier Belli, MSc, D.Ing., is a PhD student in Prof Randall Platt’s group at ETH Zurich. He graduated with a master’s degree in high-throughput approaches for biology and an engineering degree in biotechnology from the University of Strasbourg, France, in 2017. Before joining ETH Zurich, he worked for companies developing cutting-edge technologies based on the CRISPR/Cas9 system such Caribou Biosciences (Berkeley, USA) and Horizon Discovery (Vienna, Austria). These previous professional experiences have allowed him to develop strong expertise in mammalian cell culture, recombinant virus production, molecular cloning, next generation sequencing, flow cytometry and gene editing. At the Laboratory for Biological Engineering at ETH Zurich, he develops in vitro methods for high-throughput screening of genetic mutations in human cells.
Dr Benito K. Benitez is a double qualified oral and maxillofacial surgeon who is passionate about providing care for children with inborn or acquired facial and skull deformities. As a surgeon who also undertakes academic activities, he is committed to research for the benefit of these children. He lectures about craniofacial malformations at the University of Basel and also delivers lectures about craniofacial injuries to medical officers in the Swiss Armed Forces. Alongside his scientific and clinical commitments, he holds a master’s in health and business administration and is currently doing a PhD in clinical research at the Department of Clinical Research at the University of Basel.
Prof Nissim Benvenisty is the Herbert Cohn Chair in Cancer Research and the Director of The Azrieli Center for Stem Cells and Genetic Research at the Hebrew University. He earned his MD and PhD degrees from the Hebrew University and conducted postdoctoral studies at Harvard University. Prof Benvenisty’s research projects focus on stem cell biology, tissue engineering, human genetics, and cancer research. He published numerous original and review papers on human pluripotent stem cells and serves on the editorial board of various stem cell-related journals. He is a member of the steering committee of the International Stem Cell Initiative (ISCI), the Programme Board of the UK–Regenerative Medical Platform (MRC), and serves as the academic advisor for the International Symposia of the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR). Prof Benvenisty presented the issue of human embryonic stem cells in many international conferences and gave testimonies before the US Senate and the European Union. He was awarded several prizes among them the Foulkes Prize (London), the Hestrin Prize, the Teva Prize, the Kaye Prize, the Milken Prize, the ACTO Award and the Katzir Prize.
Dr Christoph T Berger is a research group leader in the Department of Biomedicine at the University of Basel. He is also a senior physician in clinical immunology and heads the vaccination clinic at University Hospital Basel. His research interests include investigating the human immune response to viruses and vaccines in healthy and immunocompromised subjects. He has conducted several prospective studies on influenza vaccination and co-founded a cohort of patients with autoimmune disease. He completed his MD at the University of Basel and did most of his postdoctoral studies in Boston, USA, at the Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard.
Dr Marc Birkhölzer is a psychiatrist at the University of Basel and a senior physician at the Juvenile Forensic Department of the Psychiatric University Clinics of Basel (UPK). His research focuses on personality disorders. Over the years, he has built an extraordinary network of collaborators in countries all over the world.
Associate professor Delia Birle, PhD, habilitated, is a member of the Faculty of Social and Humanistic Sciences, University of Oradea, Romania in the Psychology Department. She teaches courses in the research area of Experimental Psychology, Statistics and Data Analysis, and also in the area of school counselling and career counselling. Her research interests are in the areas of school and developmental psychology, including the problems facing young generation nowadays.
Her publications include over 60 titles: books and book chapters, research papers in national and international journals. She was member of the several research grants and projects, national and international, and director of one Jean Monnet Module.
Beside her academic career, she also has private practice experience for over 10 years, working with children and adolescents facing difficult situations.
Yves Blickenstorfer is a fourth-year PhD student at ETH Zurich in the field of biosensing. Prior to his PhD, he studied material science at ETH Zurich. During the past four years, he has worked on developing and optimizing the hardware and software for different novel biosensing technologies and modelling their quantitative response. He is currently focusing on sensitive electrochemical detection of gold nanoparticles in order to improve rapid diagnostic testing. He was involved in the founding of the Roche spin-off Lino Biotech and will be the CTO of Hemetron, a newly founded start-up at ETH Zurich.
Prof Johannes Bohacek is an assistant professor in the Institute for Neuroscience in the Department of Health Sciences and Technology (D-HEST) at ETH Zurich. His lab focuses on the molecular and circuit changes induced by acute stress in the brain and the behavioural consequences of these alterations. He is specifically interested in the role of the brain noradrenergic system and how it contributes to both healthy and maladaptive stress coping.
Prof Karsten Borgwardt is Full Professor of Data Mining at ETH Zürich, in the Department of Biosystems located in Basel. His work won several awards, including the 1 million EUR Krupp Award for Young Professors in 2013 and a Starting Grant 2014 from the ERC-backup scheme of the Swiss National Science Foundation. Prof Borgwardt has been and is leading large national and international research consortia, including the “Personalized Swiss Sepsis Study” (2018-2022) and two Marie Curie Innovative Training Networks on Machine Learning in Medicine (2013-2016 and 2019-2022).
Dr med Noé Brasier is a clinical researcher in the Chief Medical Information Office at the Digitalization & ICT Department at University Hospital Basel (USB). He is working on the translational intersection between engineering and clinics with a focus on novel wearable biosensors and digital biomarkers. He is a leading expert in internet-enabled sudorology with a focus on clinical sweat analysis. He completed his MD at USB by validating an automated smartphone application that reliably detects atrial fibrillation in combination with a smartphone camera.
Judith Bouman has been a PhD student in Prof Roland Regoes’ group at ETH Zurich since March 2018. In this BRCCH consortium, she is working on developing and testing statistical methods for estimating the cumulative incidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection with serosurvey data. In particular, she exploits approaches that do not require a cut-off to classify serological samples into sero-positive or negative. Before starting her PhD, she obtained a bachelor’s in medical natural sciences and a master’s in mathematics from the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam in the Netherlands. Besides working on SARS-CoV-2, she models within-host dynamics of HIV-1 and the spread of vaccine escape mutants in heterogeneous populations.
Prof Lukas Bubendorf is a surgical pathologist and Head of Cytopathology at the Institute for Pathology at University Hospital Basel (USB). He provides expertise in pulmonary pathology, performing autopsies of COVID-19 patients and evaluating autopsy histology. From 1998 to 2000, he completed a postdoctoral research fellowship at the National Human Genome Research Institutes at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, USA. He is a member of numerous national and international scientific societies, the Steering Committee of the ETOP Lungscape project, the IASLC Pathology Committee and the editorial boards of several journals including the Journal of Thoracic Oncology, Lung Cancer, Cancer Cytopathology, Diagnostic Cytopathology and Acta Cytologica. His major interests and diagnostic expertise lie within lung pathology and uropathology and in the general field of cytopathology. His research group is currently investigating the role of genomic evolution and heterogeneity in solid tumours, including lung cancer and prostate cancer. In cytology, he aims to translate molecular techniques and assays to clinical routine application.
Moniek Bresser supports the MistraL study in data management activities, specifically when it comes to capturing and reporting of patient data. After completing a research master’s in neurosciences, she moved to the field of clinical research and is currently working as a data manager in the Clinical Statistics and Data Management team in the Department of Medicine at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH). Her interests are scouting for and exploring different software solutions for capturing and reporting data in order to ensure the level of flexibility required by many research studies in resource-limited countries (e.g., offline data collection in case of hard-to-reach areas) whilst safeguarding data quality.
Prof Andrzej Brudnicki is a paediatric maxillofacial surgeon. He is responsible for the long-term evaluation of treatment results at the Clinic of Paediatric Surgery at the Institute of Mother and Child in Warsaw, where he is an assistant professor at the Maxillofacial Surgery Unit. The Institute of Mother and Child in Warsaw is the largest cleft centre in Europe, carrying out approximately 1,000 cleft operations per year. Prof Brudnicki received his PhD in early secondary alveolar bone grafting in 2014. His research interest and expertise in paediatric maxillofacial surgery focuses on developmental disorders of the facial skull and defects of the maxillofacial cleft.
Dr Sarah Brüningk is a postdoctoral researcher working at the interface of computational biology, machine learning and oncology in the lab of Prof Karsten Borgwardt at ETH Zurich. Her expertise in both, practical biological lab work and computational implementations enables her to pursue challenging projects where multidisciplinary work is key. Her research interests lie in combining machine learning and mechanistic modelling for healthcare applications embracing the clinical hallmarks of a disease in order to provide interpretable and deployable healthcare solutions. Before joining ETH Zurich, Dr Brüningk completed her PhD at the Institute of Cancer Research, London, UK on the topic of analysis and simulation of combination treatments of radiation and focused ultrasound-mediated heating. Her work has previously been recognized by several travel-, poster- and presentation awards, as well as the Nadine Barrie Smith Student Award and the Sensius Young Investigator Award.
Prof Dirk Bumann is Professor of Infection Biology at the Biozentrum of the University of Basel. His research group has worked on mechanisms of bacterial infection in animal models and human patients. In recent years, the lab has focused on single cell activities of pathogens in host tissues as a basis for developing novel anti-infective strategies. The main experimental approaches include flow cytometry, mass spectrometry and two-photon tomography.
Elisa Cappio Barazzone has been a PhD student in Prof Emma Wetter Slack’s group in the Department of Health Sciences and Technology (D-HEST) at ETH Zurich since October 2020. She obtained a BSc degree in biological sciences from the University of Turin, Italy, and an MSc degree in molecular biosciences from the Ruprecht Karl University of Heidelberg in Germany. During her undergraduate studies, she investigated the innate immunity of the intestinal epithelium. Her focus within this BRCCH project is characterizing the microbiota in mouse models and understanding disease pathogenesis.
|Andreana Castellanos is a Fulbright Scholar with an Impact MBA from Colorado State University, USA. She is the co-author of three educational books for children and the founder and CEO of Afinidata, a social start-up that uses artificial intelligence to provide access to early childhood education resources to families around the world. Afinidata serves over 70,000 families in ten countries and has been recognized as one of the most innovative solutions by institutions such as the UNICEF Innovation Fund, Forbes CA, HolonIQ and many governments.|
Philippe Cattin is from Switzerland and in 1995 he received the M.Sc. degree in computer science and in 2003 the Ph.D. degree in robotics from ETH Zurich, Switzerland. From 2003 to 2007 he was a Postdoctoral Fellow with the Computer Vision Laboratory at ETH Zurich. In 2007 he became an Assistant Professor at the University of Basel and was promoted to Associate Professor in 2015 and to Full Professor in 2019. He is the founding head and still heading the Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Basel. Philippe was in 2017 a Research Fellow at the Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston/MA.
His research interests include medical image analysis, image-guided therapy, robotics-guided laser osteotomy and virtual reality. As a principal investigator, he has finished many projects in these areas and published over 250 papers, patents and book chapters. He is also the founder of three spin-off companies and licensed his patents and software to medical device companies.
Arianna Ceruti graduated in veterinary medicine from the University of Leipzig, Germany, in 2020. Since then, she has been involved in the Suitcaselab project as a doctoral student working at the Institute of Animal Hygiene and Veterinary Public Health in Leipzig. Her major interests are molecular diagnostics, infectious diseases and One Health topics.
Frank Chacky is the Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist working with the Ministry of Health, through the National Malaria Control Programme in Tanzania. He holds a masters degree in Health Monitoring and Evaluation from Jimma University, Ethiopia. During the past 16 years he has worked at the Ministry of Health, building expertise on the evaluation of malaria control interventions, project planning, data management, development of monitoring tools, management of research teams, performing routine data quality checks and dissemination of findings. He has strong collaboration and networks with implementing partners, stakeholders and researchers at different institutions, disease programs, universities, both locally and internationally.
Frank Chacky is the Principal Investigator of the ongoing biennial School Malaria Parasitological Surveys (SMPS) conducted to school age children since 2014 countrywide covering all mainland Tanzania regions and councils with sample size of over 65,000 per survey round. He is also a co-PI of various ongoing malaria studies and a focal point for malaria research at the programme.
Dr Hui Chai-Gao works as an expert at the Swiss Centre for Electronics and Microtechnology (CSEM) in surface bioengineering for various applications (biosensor technology, biochips manufacturing, bioassay development and biomaterial). She is a biochemist, the co-inventor of seven patents and has authored and co-authored more than 20 peer-reviewed articles. She received her BS and MS degrees in chemistry from Nankai University, China, and received her PhD in biochemistry from the University of Bern in 1994.
During more than 20 years of working at the CSEM or its spin-off companies, Dr Chai-Gao has created a versatile linker technology (OptoDex®, a photolinker polymer) for diagnostic and medical applications. OptoDex®-mediated immobilisation allows single-step covalent binding of any type of (bio)-molecule, including, for example, proteins, enzymes, hapten-conjugates or polysaccharides.
Dr Chai-Gao also has experience in the development of instrumentation for life sciences, specifically optical biosensors. She has been involved in the development of various biosensors and has performed many bioassays with sensors, including food quality control, antibiotic detection, water contamination monitoring (bacteria, pesticides and herbicides) and biomarker detection for clinical diagnostics, which has led to the establishment of several methodologies and benchmarks.
Panashe Chandiwana (BSc Hons) is an MPhil student in the Department of Immunology at the University of Zimbabwe College of Health Sciences. His thesis title is “Microbiome Profiles in Pregnant Women and Pregnancy Outcomes: Roles of HIV Infection and Malnutrition.”
Masha Cherepkova is a PhD student in Prof Randall Platt’s group at the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering (D-BSSE) at ETH Zurich. She obtained her BSc and MSc degrees from the Saint Petersburg State University in Russia with a focus on stem cells and developmental biology. She then worked as a research assistant in the Biomedicum Stem Cell Center at the University of Helsinki, where she became interested in developing new research tools using CRISPR-Cas systems. This interest brought her to the Platt group, where she works on improving the efficiency of Record-seq technology in order to develop next-generation living microbial diagnostics.
Dr Nakul Chitnis is the leader of the Mathematical Epidemiology group at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH). He has a background in mathematics and his main areas of activity lie in developing and analysing mathematical models to answer questions of public health relevance. He has used various types of models ranging from population-based difference and differential equations to stochastic individual-based models in order to analyse the dynamics of malaria, COVID-19 and neglected tropical diseases, including opisthorchiasis, rabies, sleeping sickness and lymphatic filariasis and to better understand ecological processes such as foraging and dispersal behaviour and persistence at low population densities.
Sefa Cosgun has been working as a child and adolescent psychiatrist for 7 years. He completed his residency training at Istanbul University, Istanbul Medical Faculty with a thesis about borderline personality disorders. He actively follows a wide range of patients, especially trauma-related and personality disorders at an outpatient clinic.
|Jorge Cuartas is a doctoral student in education and human development at Harvard University, USA, where he is also a graduate student affiliate at the Institute for Quantitative Social Science and a Science and Innovation Fellow at the Center on the Developing Child (2020–2021). His research focuses on disparities in child development and parenting practices in global contexts and the effects of corporal punishment on children’s neural, cognitive and socioemotional development. His research aim is to develop evidence that can inform scalable programs to prevent corporal punishment and promote positive disciplinary approaches in prevention efforts and policy. He is a co-founder and co-director of Apapacho, a non-profit organization aimed at fostering positive caregiving and child development in Colombia. He received a BSc in economics from Jorge Tadeo Lozano University and an MSc in economics from the University of The Andes, both in Bogotá, Colombia, as well as an EdM in human development and psychology from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.|
Dr Kanika Dheman graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Electronic Engineering from the University of Essex, UK in 2011. During her bachelor studies, she was awarded the KF Bowden Memorial Prize in 2010 for academic excellence and the Institute of Engineering Technology Prize for the highest BEng degree mark in the region of South East England. Additionally, she was felicitated by the Department of Computer Science and Electronic Engineering for outstanding performance and initiative for her bachelor thesis on dispersion in long haul optical fibres for telecommunication. In 2014 she earned a Master degree in Micro and Nano systems at ETH Zurich, Switzerland, where her master thesis focused on the design and fabrication of a magnetically actuated compliant milli gripper for minimally invasive surgery. She was an Engineers for development (ETH4D) scholar during her PhD and her research focused on developing non-invasive wearable sensing for bladder volume monitoring. At present, her research is focused on the design and development of next-generation wearable systems for reliable physiological signal monitoring for early detection of the onset of sepsis in the neonatal population.
Dr Ndongo Dia is a virologist and Head of the Reference Center for influenza and other respiratory viruses at the Institut Pasteur de Dakar. His team is involved in influenza surveillance in Senegal, working closely with WHO collaborating centres. His research activities focus on the genetic and antigenic dynamic of influenza viruses in Senegal and the investigation of flu viruses at the human/animal interfaces. He also looks at non-influenza viruses (including coronavirus, respiratory syncytial virus, rhinovirus, parainfluenza, enterovirus, adenovirus and metapneumovirus) with the aim of describing their molecular epidemiology in Senegal. The burden of respiratory viruses (flu and non-flu), especially in paediatric groups, is also an important aspect of his team’s activities.
Prof Médéric Diard is an assistant professor at the Biozentrum of the University of Basel. The Diard group investigates new approaches to managing bacterial infectious diseases and engineering the intestinal microbiota. The group’s toolbox comprises probiotic competitors, bacteriophages, vaccines and mobile regulatory elements. It deduces robust combinations of strategies from a detailed understanding of bacterial evolution both inside and outside of the host.
Dr med Sarah Dräger is an internal medicine and infectious diseases specialist and senior physician in the Division of Internal Medicine at University Hospital Basel (USB). Her research interests include investigating the therapeutic drug monitoring of antibiotics, especially in critically ill patients, and improving prescription practices in hospitals through the implementation of antibiotic and diagnostic stewardship programmes. She is a postdoc in PD Dr med Michael Osthoff’s research group.
Dr Robert Dünner has been a senior scientific collaborator at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) since October 2020. In this BRCCH consortium, he is working on developing an agent-based model of the SARS-CoV-2 epidemic in Switzerland. This model will be combined with a machine-learning approach in order to investigate the optimal properties and delivery strategies of pharmaceutical interventions, including, but not limited to, vaccines. Dr Dünner has a PhD from ETH Zurich, where he developed an agent-based model of negative-frequency dependent host-parasite coevolution and used it to investigate the influence of hierarchical metapopulation structure on the maintenance of genetic diversity.
Prof Kerina Duri (PhD, MSc, BSc Hons) is an associate professor at the University of Zimbabwe College of Health Sciences and the current Chair of the Department of Immunology. She established a birth cohort of 1200 mother-infant pairs, from which there has been an incredible accumulation of data over the past 24 months. Her research interest is in understanding how maternal comorbidities such as HIV, Helicobacter pylori and intestinal helminths infections including malnutrition and mental health affect pregnancy outcomes, infant growth and health, immune development and immune dysregulation through gut microbiota profiles and composition from birth to adolescence, with a special focus on HIV-exposed but uninfected infants and children.
Dr Philippe Dussart is a medical virologist at the Institut Pasteur de Madagascar, part of the Institut Pasteur International Network. He is involved in research and public health with a special interest in the diagnosis, epidemiology and molecular characterization of emerging tropical infectious diseases, mainly arboviral diseases (dengue, yellow fever, Zika, Japanese encephalitis, chikungunya and more recently Rift Valley fever). Prior to working in Madagascar, he was based at the Institut Pasteur in French Guiana (South America) and the Institut Pasteur du Cambodge (Southeast Asia). His research areas also include the molecular characterization and epidemiology of seasonal and highly pathogenic avian influenza viruses. He also contributes to surveillance and research programmes focused on other emerging infectious diseases of interest, e.g., coronaviruses (including SARS-CoV-2), rabies (which is still considered a neglected disease) and enteroviruses.
Prof Adrian Egli is Director of the Institute of Medical Microbiology at the University of Zurich. Prof Egli and his team have a strong expertise in using bacterial genomics and metagenomics to detect hypervirulent and multi-drug resistant bacteria in patient samples and explore transmission networks. He is a project partner within the Precision Microbiota Engineering for Child Health BRCCH project.
Dr Kamal Eltom is an associate professor and Head of the Unit of Animal Health and Safety of Animal Products in the Institute for Studies and Promotion of Animal Exports at the University of Khartoum (UofK) in Sudan. His research interests include host-pathogen interaction, drug and antimicrobial resistance and the development of simple and rapid diagnostic techniques. He obtained his first degrees (BVSc and MVSc) from the University of Khartoum and his PhD from Georg-August University of Göttingen in Germany. He has won scholarships from the Sudanese Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research (MOHE) as well as the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), IBT Göttingen, and Göttingen International. He has also received research grants from the UofK, the MHE, the DAAD, the German Research Foundation (DFG), and the European and Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership.
Julian Erkert is a research associate and doctoral student at the University of Basel. He graduated from the University of Basel in dental medicine and is currently studying medicine at the University of Bern in order to become an oral and maxillofacial surgeon. His main focus lies in the segmentation and analysis of imaging datasets for the evaluation of surgical procedures in oral and maxillofacial surgery.
Manina Etter is a doctoral candidate in Prof Gregor Hutter’s lab in the Department of Biomedicine at the University of Basel. In the BRCCH NeuroCovid trial, she leads the clinical part of the project, which is the subject of her doctoral research. She is a medical student and intends to complete a PhD in the field of immunotherapeutic treatments in neuro-oncology.
Dr Felix Euler is the head of a research group and currently working as clinical psychologist at the Department of Forensic Child and Adolescent Psychiatry of the Psychiatric University Clinics Zürich, Switzerland. After working as a junior research assistant in the Department of Neurophysiology, Max Planck Institute for Brain Research in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, he completed his PhD on the subject of Emotional Stimulation Processing and Empathy in Aggressive Adolescents in Prof Christina Stadler's research lab at the University of Basel, Switzerland. His present research interests are mainly in the topic of clinical treatment of juvenile offenders, with a focus on emotion regulation and therapeutic alliance.
Dr Rick Farouni is a bioinformatics scientist in Prof Randall Platt’s group at the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering (D-BSSE) at ETH Zurich. He is an applied statistician and computational biologist with expertise in the statistical modelling and bioinformatics analysis of genomics, single-cell transcriptomics (e.g., scRNA-seq) and CRISPR genome editing data. His current research focus is the statistical model;ing of data generated by single-cell CRISPR screens and transcriptional recording via CRISPR spacer acquisition experiments (e.g., Record-seq).
Prof Dr Günther Fink is an associate professor and Head of the Household Economics and Health Systems Research unit at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) in Basel. His work focuses on developing and evaluating new and innovative approaches for improving child health and development and on measuring the long-term benefits of early life improvements. He is currently the PI of the Zambia Early Childhood Development project, as well as the Co-PI of the São Paulo Western Region Cohort project, two longitudinal studies exploring the long-term effects of early life adversity. He is also currently working on cluster-randomized trials aiming to improve nutritional and early learning outcomes among children under age 5 in Brazil, Pakistan, Peru, South Africa and Zambia.
Prof Stephan Frank is a neuropathologist at the Institute of Pathology at University Hospital Basel (USB), providing neuropathological expertise including brain biopsy diagnostics and ISH-based SARS-COV2 detection.
Dr Sören Fricke heads the Integrated and Flexible Sensors sector at the Swiss Centre for Electronics and Microtechnology (CSEM), where he develops sensors that are mainly applied in life sciences, robotics and Industry 4.0. Dr Fricke is a physicist with a broad background in semiconductors, micro- and nano-optics and printed electronics, and he gained a strong manufacturing background in the automotive electronics industry.
Dr Fricke will contribute to the project in the area of scale-up and pilot production, maintaining a link with the M4IVD association, of which he is the Chairman. His research interest is in precision technologies for life science applications and the scale-up of new technologies to industrial readiness. Within his sector and through his connection to M4IVD, he strives to not only develop lab prototypes, but also to bring these to pilot production. The CSEM’s technology platforms provide a toolbox for diagnostic devices, which are constantly being developed for anticipated future needs.
Dr Michael Frimpong is a senior research fellow at the Kumasi Centre for Collaborative Research in Tropical Medicine (KCCR) and a lecturer at the Department of Molecular Medicine, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Ghana. His research focuses on developing and implementing novel and innovative diagnostic tests for the detection of emerging and endemic infectious diseases in resource-limited settings. He received his PhD in immunology from KNUST and a postgraduate certificate in molecular diagnostics from the Ludwig-Maximilian-University, Munich. He has contributed significantly to the understanding and development of new diagnostic tools and treatment for neglected tropical diseases (NTDs), particularly Buruli ulcer, and has published more than 30 peer-reviewed articles on the subject in high-impact journals.
Dr Frimpong was selected by the NTD Department, World Health Organization, to train in diagnostic development at Harvard University and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, USA. In partnership with WHO and agencies such as the American Leprosy Mission (ALM), AIM Initiative, and German Leprosy and Relief Association (GLRA), Dr Frimpong has supported the implementation of diagnostic networks in Ghana, Liberia and Nigeria by providing technical support. He is a member of the WHO NTD Diagnostic Advisory Group (DTAG) and the Network of Buruli ulcer PCR Laboratories in the WHO African Region (BU LABNET Africa) and also serves on the expert panel of the network. Dr Frimpong has received several grants, including an EDCTP career development fellowship, International Society for Infectious Diseases grant, the African Researchers’ small grant program (SGPII) from the African Network of Neglected Tropical Diseases, a TWAS-DFG Cooperation Visit Program from The World Academy of Sciences and Germany Research Foundation.
He designed and leads the field deployment of the mobile van laboratory platform for molecular testing of COVID-19.
PD Dr Sean Froese is a Principal Investigator in the Metabolism Division at University Children’s Hospital Zürich. His group studies inherited metabolic disorders, in particular those that affect folate and vitamin B12 metabolism. This encompasses investigation at the molecular level, including structural, biochemical and multi-omics approaches, combined with whole cell and whole organism studies. The group’s vision is to use this integrated approach and international collaborations in order to understand disease pathomechanisms, identify new therapeutic targets and have a meaningful impact on therapies for these rare diseases with unmet needs.
Dr Tracy Glass is a statistician with 20 years of experience working in the fields of cancer and infectious diseases research. She is the head of the Clinical Statistics and Data Management group in the Medicine Department of the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute. Her interest lies in designing and conducting clinical trials at all phases of development. She has extensive experience with complex cluster trials in low-resource settings. Her research focuses on the causal modelling of observational data. She is an associate professor at the University of Basel and teaches several statistics courses at the post-graduate level. She has a Master of Science in Statistics from the University of Washington and a PhD in Epidemiology from the University of Basel.
Dr Lucia Gonzalez is a project manager for SolidarMed (a Swiss-based non-governmental organisation) collaborating on the BRCCH Mistral project. She is a Spanish-trained physician with a master’s in global health policy from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, UK. She is a Clinical Assistant Professor in Paediatrics at the Baylor College of Medicine and is currently pursuing a PhD at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) at the University of Basel.
With more than 15 years of experience in international health and development, she has worked in tuberculosis, HIV, COVID-19 and primary health programmes in Europe, Sub-Saharan Africa, Central Asia, Southeast Asia and the Pacific region. Her interests include the management of health programmes, evidence creation, policy dialogues and health economics.
Dr Paulo Gotardo is a senior research scientist with the Digital Humans group at DisneyResearch|Studios. His main research areas are computer vision, graphics and machine learning, with a focus on capturing and modelling the appearance, 3D geometry and motion of dynamic scenes and on building digital humans. Dr Gotardo received his BSc and MSc degrees in informatics from the Federal University of Paraná, Brazil, and his PhD in electrical and computer engineering from Ohio State University, USA. Prior to joining DisneyResearch, he was a graduate research associate at the Advanced Computing Center for the Arts and Design and a postdoctoral researcher in the Computational Biology and Cognitive Science Lab, both at Ohio State University. Dr Gotardo also worked as an associate research scientist with DisneyResearch in Pittsburgh at the Carnegie Mellon University campus.
Dr phil nat Dipl Psych Kirstin Goth, University of Basel, is a senior researcher at the Psychiatric University Clinics (UPK) Basel in Switzerland. She is specialized in test construction with focus on age-adaption and culture-adaption. She led the international project on "Phenotyping healthy and impaired personality development in children and adolescents - Early assessment of PD" initiated by Prof Klaus Schmeck from its start in 2011 until its end in 2022.
In addition, she leads the universitarian self-publishing project academic-tests (https://academic-tests.com), in which all developed instruments (AIDA, LoPF-Q, OPD-CA2-SQ: instruments for assessing emerging PD with an each different clinical focus, applicable for adolescent self-report from 12 years on) in all languages and the scientific results are made available in a fast and uncomplicated way in order to promote early detection and treatment of personality disorders (PD) as well as international research and networking.
The newly developed parent versions of LoPF-Q, OPD-CA2-SQ and PID5BF+CA for assessing emerging personality difficulties in parent report for children between 6 and 18 are the starting point for an international longitudinal investigation of the development of personality disorders.
Dr Baran Gözcü is a researcher in the Computer Graphics Laboratory at ETH Zurich. He is interested in applied research and his current research interests are in the fields of biomedical imaging, machine learning and computer vision. Dr Gözcü received his BSc degrees in electrical and electronics engineering and mathematics from Koç University in Istanbul, Turkey, and his MSc and PhD degrees from the School of Computer and Communication Sciences at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL) in Lausanne.
Associate Professor Hojka Gregoric Kumperscak, MD, PhD was trained in child and adolescent psychiatry in Slovenia and abroad (Italy, UK, Germany and Switzerland). She has held the Chair of the Department of Psychiatry in the Faculty of Medicine, University of Maribor in Slovenia, since January 2017, and has been Head of the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Unit, University Clinical Center in Maribor since 2008. She is President of the Slovenian Association for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. She is a member of the editorial board for the journal of the World Psychiatric Association, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (WPA-CAP).
Her clinical work is mainly with adolescents with personality and psychotic disorders. The research work is focused in genetic of developmental disorders including ADHD and early onset schizophrenia. She is an Adolescent Identity Treatment psychotherapist and trainer. She has written many scientific articles and book chapters on different child and adolescent psychiatry topics.
Dr Michele Gregorini is a postdoctoral researcher at the Institute for Chemical and Bioengineering (ICB) at ETH Zurich. Dr Gregorini is a pioneer fellow of ETH Zurich and his PhD thesis focuses on the agile development of a variety of chemical devices. His main project has been the development of hardware and software for the peakPCR platform, a series of thermocycling devices performing PCR analysis in a fraction of the usual time. Dr Gregorini obtained his PhD in Prof Wendelin Stark’s group after finishing his master’s degree in mechanical engineering at ETH Zurich.
Prof Markus Gross is Professor of Computer Science and Head of the Computer Graphics Laboratory at ETH Zurich and the Vice President of Research and Director of DisneyResearch|Studios. He joined ETH Zurich’s Computer Science faculty in 1994. His research interests include physically based modelling, computer animation, immersive displays and video technology. Before joining Disney, Prof Gross was Head of the Institute of Computational Sciences at ETH Zurich. He received an MSc in electrical and computer engineering and a PhD in computer graphics and image analysis from Saarland University in Germany in 1986 and 1989 respectively.
Prof Gross serves on the boards of numerous international research institutes, societies and governmental organizations. He was the recipient of the EUROGRAPHICS Outstanding Technical Contributions Award in 2010 and the Swiss ICT Champions Award in 2011. He is a fellow of the ACM and the EUROGRAPHICS Association and a member of the German Academy of Sciences Leopoldina and the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities. He was awarded the Konrad Zuse Medal from the German Computer Science Society in 2013 and the Karl Heinz Beckurts Prize and the IEEE Visualization Career Award in 2015. In 2013 and 2019, he received a Technical Achievement Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. He is a co-founder of Cyfex AG, Novodex AG, LiberoVision AG, Dybuster AG, Gimalon AG, Kapanu AG, Perceptiko AG, Propulsion Academy AG, Arbrea Labs AG, Nanocorp AG and Animatico AG.
Dr Keith Gunapala is a postdoctoral fellow in the lab of Prof Verdon Taylor at the Department of Biomedicine of the University of Basel. His research interests lie in understanding human brain development using organotypic culturing and cerebral organoids. He aims to use these platforms to better understand normal human brain development, neurodevelopmental disorders, and find novel therapeutic strategies. He holds a PhD from the University of Basel in neurobiology.
Dr med Yakir Guri (MD-PhD) is part of the Department of Internal Medicine at University Hospital Basel. After obtaining his PhD from the Biozentrum of the University of Basel in the laboratory of Prof Michael Hall, he returned to clinical practice. Dr Guri is an expert on mechanisms regulating cell growth, with a particular emphasis on lipid metabolism and immunology. He brings together hands-on experience in treating patients, including those with COVID-19, and a deep understanding of disease mechanisms. As a physician-investigator, he strives to convert results from research discoveries and insights into clinically relevant outcomes.
Prof Johannes Häberle is a paediatrician, neonatologist and intensive care specialist and a senior metabolic consultant at University Children’s Hospital Zürich, where he is also Head of the Metabolic Laboratory, and an Assistant Professor of Paediatrics at the University of Zürich. His research group focuses on inherited defects of ureagenesis and on the development of novel treatment options for urea cycle disorders. Dr Häberle chairs the European working group for guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of urea cycle disorders and is a member of the Executive and Scientific Boards of the European Registry and Network for Intoxication Type Metabolic Diseases (E-IMD). He is also Chair of the SSIEM Education and Training Advisory Committee (ETAC) and a council member of the Society for the Study of Inborn Errors of Metabolism (SSIEM).
|Prof Stella M. Hartinger Peña is an associate professor at Cayetano Heredia University in Peru. She leads the Unit for Environmental Development, Health and Environment and co-directs CLIMA, the Center for Latin-American Research on Climate Change and Health. Prof Peña brings her expertise in managing randomized control trials in resource-constrained settings in order to address environmental health problems such as indoor air pollution, WASH, disease prevention and maintaining health and wellbeing. Her expertise extends to carrying out randomized controlled trials in early child development and environmental health; setting up and conducting cohort studies on the interactions between viruses and respiratory bacteria in children. She also set up a study on a multigenerational high-altitude birth cohort that explores the effects of health and environment exposure during pregnancy and its impact throughout the life course.|
Dr Jasmin Haslbauer is a resident at the Institute of Medical Genetics and Pathology at University Hospital Basel (USB). She executes autopsies and is responsible for tissue collection, and also provides histopathological examinations, immunohistochemical examinations and data consolidation. She received her undergraduate medical degree from Johann Wolfgang Goethe Universität in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, and an MSc in molecular pathology and genomics from the Barts Cancer Institute at Queen Mary University of London, UK. Her current research deals with COVID-19-associated immunological and cardiovascular pathology.
Dr Jürgen Hench is responsible for molecular pathology diagnostics at University Hospital Basel. He is a board certified neuropathologist with a strong interest in implementing artificial intelligence strategies in tumour classification.
Dr Jean-Michel Heraud is Research Director at the Institut Pasteur de Dakar. He acquired a broad experience in infectious disease and public health, obtained through his years of work at the Institut Pasteur of French Guiana, the National Institutes of Health, and the Institut Pasteur de Madagascar. Dr Heraud has led several public health and research programs covering a broad variety of topics (e.g., influenza and other respiratory viruses, arboviruses, hepatitis, zoonotic pathogens). In his current position at the Institut Pasteur de Dakar, Dr Heraud is responsible for the National Reference Laboratory for Rabies and viral encephalitis. He oversees developing surveillance and research programs on rabies and viruses associated to encephalitis.
Dr Heraud has developed intense skills in public health and management of infectious diseases and have an important scientific network all over the world. For his 12 years of work on infectious diseases in Madagascar, Dr Heraud received the medal of Knight of the National Order of the Republic of Madagascar.
After completing medical school in Zürich and Lausanne, Prof Cristoph Hess obtained his MD and PhD from the University of Basel before starting his clinical education in Basel and at Imperial College London. Subsequently, he moved to Boston, Massachusetts, where he worked on T cell migration at Harvard Medical School. Returning to Switzerland in 2004, Dr Hess started his own research group in the Department of Biomedicine at the University of Basel. In 2009, he became a professor of medicine and Head of the Medical Outpatient Division and the Clinical Immunology Service at University Hospital Basel. In 2019, he was appointed as Professor of Experimental Medicine at the University of Cambridge. Dr Hess’ research focuses on the translational aspects of lymphocyte function and its metabolic basis. The goal of his work is to improve our understanding of patients suffering from disorders of immunometabolic regulation.
|María Luisa Huaylinos is the project supervisor at the San Marcos headquarters-Cajamarca of Cayetano Heredia University in Peru. She has a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences with an orientation in biotechnology from the National Agrarian University—La Molina in Peru. In addition to having participated in various research projects in the areas of health, nutrition, biochemistry, microbiology and molecular biology, she also supervised a research project in rural communities where the children were assisted by the Cuna Más programme.|
Dr Isabelle Hug is a research associate in the group of Prof. Médéric Diard at the University of Basel since 2019. She started her studies in biology at the ETH Zürich and received a PhD in microbiology and biotechnology from the University of Alberta, Canada. The investigation and engineering of bacterial glycosylation systems were the focus of her doctoral research in Prof. Mario Feldman’s laboratory. As a postdoctoral researcher under Prof. Urs Jenal, she elucidated the bacterial sense of touch. For the current BRCCH project, she works on modifying members of the human gut microbiome in situ with the goal to benefit patients with metabolic deficiencies.
Dr Eveline Hürlimann is a Senior Scientific Collaborator at the Swiss TPH. Her research interests include integrated control strategies against NTDs (mainly soil-transmitted helminths and schistosomiasis, diarrheal diseases) including WASH, community-directed approaches and combination therapy; clinical research and optimization of anthelminthic treatment against soil-transmitted helminths; and assessment of treatment benefits from regular deworming in endemic communities (clinically examined and self-reported) to advocate for more effective helminth control efforts and policy change
She has published >40 articles in the peer-reviewed literature, including 10 as first author. She has coordinated a 3-year multi-country randomized controlled trial in 3 developing countries including co-supervision of 3 PhD students and leading to more than 10 scientific articles, published or under review. Her work has contributed to the inclusion of a new indication for the administration of ivermectin in the essential medicines list of the World Health Organization for soil-transmitted helminth control. She was awarded the 9th Prix CSRS-Fond Eremitage 2017 for scientific research in partnership and the Anne Maurer Cecchini prize of 2022 for outstanding clinical or epidemiological research on one of the neglected tropical diseases in 2020 or 2021.
Prof Gregor Hutter is a senior neurosurgeon at University Hospital Basel. Within the frame of the FTC consortium (link below), he leads the clinical Neuro-COVID trial and implements CODEX analysis of brain autopsy samples from COVID patients. Prof Hutter started his research group in brain tumour immunotherapy at the Department of Biomedicine at the University of Basel two years ago. He is a senior neurosurgeon specializing in neuro-oncology and also a molecular immunologist. His research intends to boost novel immunotherapeutic approaches in neuro-oncology, especially glioblastoma. Prof Hutter’s group aims to combine approaches that either locally target microglia and the adaptive immune system or directly interfere with the tumour cells. This is also achieved using innovative technologies such as 3D human tissue cultures and CODEX.
Vanja Ivancevic is the leader of the BRCCH-funded DAVINCI project and will be supporting the team with regard to project and study management. She received her master’s degree in molecular biology with a major in infection biology from the Biozentrum of the University of Basel in February 2019. After that, she joined Hemex’s clinical operations team, where she supports the team with clinical study design development and with submitting clinical studies of medical devices and pharmaceuticals to regulatory authorities and ethics committees. She also plays a key role in managing and writing grant applications and in supporting companies with the requirement and implementation of coaching programmes.
Dr Saso Jezernik is a postdoctoral researcher and will be supporting the BRCCH-funded DAVINCI team with regard to the device’s design, users and medical input. He received an MSc in electrical engineering from the Technical University of Graz, Austria, in 1996 and a PhD in biomedical science and engineering from Aalborg University in Denmark in 1999, in collaboration with the Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, USA (working on active medical implants). From 1999 until 2002, he was a postdoc at ETH Zurich working in medical robotics and neuroscience, and he later became an assistant professor at the University of Maribor.
In 2006, Dr Jezernik completed the MIT Sloan Visiting Fellows Program and studied at MIT and Harvard Medical School, specializing in technology strategy, innovation management and topics such as biomaterials, implants, MEMS microtechnology and tissue engineering. For the past 20 years, he has been focusing on implementing new technologies and enabling innovation in mechatronics and medical device products (e.g., active implants, medical injectors, hearing instruments) working for major pharma and medtech companies. Lately, his focus has been on digital healthcare and IoT areas, enabling data collection, connectivity and new solutions and business models within the healthcare ecosystem. Dr Jezernik is a designated EU FP7 healthcare innovation reviewer and an evaluator for the EU Flagship R&I Human Brain Project. He holds four patents and has 18 peer-reviewed publications. He also serves as a reviewer for major medical and biomedical engineering journals. He currently works as a Director of the life science consulting company Consultys in Switzerland, and he is also a co-founder of the digital health start-up Bioinitials.
Dr Sizun Jiang is a postdoctoral fellow at the Stanford University School of Medicine in the USA. He contributes his multiple areas of expertise to this project (link below), such as virology, multiplexed imaging and sequencing, the development of viralMIBI, CODEX and CyTOF computational data analysis.
Dr Vlastimil Jirasko is a postdoctoral research fellow in Prof Janos Vörös’ research group at the Laboratory of Biosensors and Bioelectronics (LBB) at ETH Zurich, focusing on the assay development of rapid antigen test detecting SARS-CoV-2 viral proteins. He obtained his PhD in the field of virology in the Molecular Virology laboratory at Heidelberg University in Germany studying the assembly of infectious viral particles of the hepatitis C virus. He gained further expertise in protein biochemistry during his work in the Solid-State NMR laboratory at ETH Zurich, where he optimised sample preparation of viral membrane proteins in liposomes for analysis by proton-detected magic-angle spinning solid-state NMR.
Catherine Jutzeler is an Assistant Professor of Biomedical Data Science at the Department of Health Sciences and Technology (D-HEST) at ETH Zurich. Her research aims to identify causes, risk factors, and biomarkers of disease progression. At the core of her research is a series of prospective and retrospective investigations that integrate genetic, biochemical, clinical assessments and medication history with both traditional epidemiological approaches and machine-learning algorithms. Prof Jutzeler’s innovative and award-winning research has already led to the discovery of novel targets for the treatment of neurological diseases, as well as novel predictors of disease progression. Based on her expertise, she has been consulted by other researchers and pharmaceutical companies for advice related to clinical trial design, observational studies (including sample size calculations, analysis plans, data requests) and systematic reviews (including meta-analysis).
Dr Sarah Kadelka has been a BRCCH consortium member and a postdoctoral researcher in Prof Roland Regoes’ group at ETH Zurich since September 2020. She has a background in within-host modelling of infectious diseases. In this BRCCH consortium, she will be developing mathematical models that capture aspects of the within-host dynamics of SARS-CoV-2 infections. Prior to joining ETH Zurich, she obtained a PhD in mathematics from Virginia Tech, USA, where she worked on within-host modelling of hepatitis B infections.
Dr Georgios Kalamakis, PhD, is a joint postdoctoral fellow between ETH Zurich and the Novartis Institute for BioMedical Research (NIBR). He obtained a master’s degree in neural and behavioural sciences from the University of Tübingen, Germany, and did his PhD research in the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) in Heidelberg, where he studied the impact of ageing on neural stem cells in the murine brain. Dr Kalamakis has always been interested in high-throughput screening, which led him to join the Laboratory for Biological Engineering (ETH Zurich) and the Functional Genetics laboratory (NIBR), where he performs various genetic screens using the CRISPR/Cas9 system.
Moisés Kassin, Dipl Psychology, Phd does research in psychotherapy and psychimetric questionaires at the Iberoamerican University, Mexico. He is a professor in the Mexican Psychoanalytic Association and works in private practice as a psychotherapist. He is the director of the Mexican Institute for Studies of Personality Disorders and a supervisor of the Monte Sinai Hebrew School in Mexico City, Mexico. He was the translator of the book Tratamiento para la Identidad del Adolescente Una Aproximación Integral de la Personalidad. Manual Moderno (2015). He holds a master degree in general psychotherapy and is a specialist in child and adolescent psychoanalytic psychotherapy.
Dr Bulemba Katende, MD, MSc, is the MistraL project manager under SolidarMed in Lesotho. His research interests include clinical infectious disease, infectious disease epidemiology and immunology.
For the past ten years, he has worked in various clinical settings as a medical doctor in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Lesotho before moving to a public health setting, where he served as a technical advisor for the districts of Mokhotlong, Butha Buthe and Thaba Tseka in rural Lesotho under the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric Aids Foundation. In this position, in collaboration with the District Health Management Teams (DHMTs), he managed to implement a comprehensive HIV/TB programme, which had a positive impact on HIV and TB case identification, linkage and retention in care.
In 2015, he was awarded the Novartis scholarship, which allowed him to complete a master’s degree in clinical epidemiology at Stellenbosch University in the Republic of South Africa. During this time, he successfully conducted a countrywide research project that explored the impact of the use of GeneXpert technology on patients diagnosed with rifampicin-resistant tuberculosis in Lesotho. Dr Katende has experience in clinical general medicine, medical research, epidemiology and programme management.
Dr Sherrie Kelly is a BRCCH Collaborator and a global health modeler at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH). She has over 20 years of experience working with country governments across all income levels and world regions to achieve their health economic goals, as well as collaborating with a wide range of national and international organisations. She has a background in epidemiology and disease modelling with a focus on HIV, malaria, COVID-19, TB, and maternal-child health. Prior to joining the Swiss TPH, Dr Kelly led the Burnet Institute's Optima Consortium on HIV, TB, and malaria applications research, as well as COVID-19 and maternal health and family planning modelling applications. She has facilitated numerous workshops and country missions, and was an invited keynote speaker at the 2019 International AIDS Society conference on HIV Science, as well as a speaker at AIDS2020. Dr Kelly is a Chief Investigator on the NHMRC Australia Maternal-newborn-child modelling grant and affiliate of the HIV Modelling Consortium. She was a recipient of the Monash University Research Training Program Scholarship and the UNSW International Postgraduate Award.
Laura Kiser is a junior scientist and medical student at the University of Basel. In her master’s thesis, which is supervised by Dr Andreas Mueller and guided by Dr Benito Benitez, she focuses on cleft research. She is especially interested in biomedical engineering methods for treating cleft patients.
Gilbert Koch is an interdisciplinary scientist with mathematical and computational background specialized in clinical pharmacology and pharmacometrics. He has more than 15 years of experience in analyzing data from pre-clinical and clinical studies with mathematical-statistical models. Dr Koch’s main research topics are developing decision support tools, modeling clinical data and maturation effects in neonates, and enhancing pharmacometrics methodology with approaches from mathematics, optimal control theory, machine learning and artificial intelligence. He is also Adjunct Assistant Professor at the State University of New York at Buffalo, USA, was a co-founder (2017) and past chair (2019-2021) of the Mathematical and Computational Sciences Special Interest Group at the International Society of Pharmacometrics, is editorial board member of the Journal of Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics, and is a member of the scientific organizing committee of the annual international conference Population Approach Group Europe.
Dr Joachim Köser is a scientist at the Institute for Nanotechnology in the Institute for Chemistry and Bioanalytics (ICB) at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland (FHNW) in Muttenz. He has participated in several medical technology, tissue engineering and biosensor-related nanotechnology projects, including two LFA-related projects.
A biologist by training, Dr Köser did his PhD at the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg before moving to Basel in 1999 to join Prof Ueli Aebi’s group at the Biozentrum of the University of Basel. In 2003, he joined the start-up company Concentris GmbH, where he was responsible for the application development of cantilever sensors as chemical and biological sensors. In 2008, he joined Prof Uwe Pieles’ nanotechnology group at the FHNW.
Maria Kuhn, MSc, is a PhD student in Prof Randall Platt’s group at ETH Zurich. As one of the first students to join, she helped to establish the Laboratory for Biological Engineering, and her PhD research combines her two main interests by developing direct in vivo CRISPR screens in the central nervous system. Before joining ETH Zurich, she worked at the Roche Innovation Center Zürich (RICZ), focusing on high-throughput molecular cloning and gene expression techniques. She graduated with high distinction in molecular biotechnology from the Technical University of Munich (TUM), Germany, in 2015. During her studies, she received a German National Scholarship and was part of the TUM: Young Academy support programme. For her master’s thesis at the Helmholtz Centre in Munich, she studied genetic mutations in murine models for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.
Prof Niklaus Labhardt is a physician trained in Switzerland, Cameroon and Lesotho specializing in infectious diseases and tropical medicine with a master’s in international health. Since his obtainment of an SNSF Eccellenza Professorship grant, he has held a position as a senior infectious disease doctor at University Hospital Basel and has led the “HIV and Chronic Disease Care” research group at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH). His research group’s work embraces clinical, epidemiological, molecular and implementation research focusing on HIV, HIV comorbidities and non-communicable diseases in Southeastern Africa and Switzerland. He is the sponsor/chief-investigator for several published or ongoing randomized controlled trials addressing questions around community-based HIV testing and care, improvement of the care cascade, cost-effective differentiated service delivery models and treatment failure in persons living with HIV and/or other chronic conditions in resource-limited settings. As President of the Board of the Swiss not-for-profit organization SolidarMed, he is committed to improving health for people living in rural areas in Subsaharan Africa. You can read more on the research group’s website.
Louise completed her M.Sc. in Biotechnological Engineering at KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Sweden before joining ETH Zürich as a doctoral student, shared between Prof. Médéric Diard and Prof. Emma Slack. She is working on developing precise tools for engineering the gut microbiota in situ to reduce production of harmful microbial metabolites for symptom amelioration in children with inborn errors of metabolism. Furthermore, she is working on a phage therapy approach to exclude encapsulated pathogens from the gut environment to prevent sepsis.
Dr Daniela Ledezma Tejeida is a postdoc in Prof Uwe Sauer’s group. In her research, she combines metabolomics and transcriptomics data in order to understand transcriptional regulation in E. coli.
Dr Epke Le Rutte is a senior scientist in the Disease Modelling and Intervention Dynamics group at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH), which she joined in November 2020. She will use an individual-based model, which captures the transmission dynamics of COVID-19, to identify the impact of different interventions on public health outcomes such as COVID-19 incidence and mortality. She also focuses on actively involving the projects’ stakeholders and on supporting policymakers.
Dr Le Rutte is a veterinarian with a PhD in human neglected tropical disease (NTD) control and elimination. During her PhD and postdoc (both at Erasmus University Medical Center in Rotterdam, the Netherlands) she was an active member of the NTD Modelling Consortium, where she applied NTD transmission models to support policymakers such as the World Health Organization and Ministries of Health in identifying the most effective strategies for controlling and eliminating NTDs.
Dr Gillian Levine is an epidemiologist and Botnar Research Centre for Child Health Postdoctoral Excellence Programme Fellow at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute. Her research focuses on clinical epidemiology and newborn and young child health and survival in low-resource settings, and on the development and testing of interventions to improve health care quality and appropriate antibiotic use for infants and young children. She currently works on projects to develop and test novel electronic clinical decision support tools to improve implementation of evidence-based medical care for young infants. Gillian has a Masters of Public Health from the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University and PhD in Epidemiology from the University of Washington.
Dr Johanna Lieb is a senior staff neuroradiologist and the Deputy Head of the Department of Diagnostic and Interventional Neuroradiology in the Radiology and Nuclear Medicine Clinic at University Hospital Basel (USB). In the frame of the FTC project (link below), she provides neuroloradiological expertise and is part of interdisciplinary neurological groups. She received her medical degree from Ulm, Germany, and took her residency in general radiology at USB and University Children’s Hospital Basel (UKBB). Thereafter, she received special fellowship training in diagnostic neuroradiology from USB, with a special focus on neuroinflammation, neurodegeneration and neuro-oncology, as well as head and neck radiology (in which she has a European Diploma). Her clinical activities cover the whole of conventional diagnostic neuroradiology and head and neck radiology, as well as advanced imaging methods (perfusion, MR spectroscopy and functional MRI). She is part of interdisciplinary research teams in different fields of neuroscience.
Dr Yoriko Lill is a research associate at University Hospital Basel (USB). She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in applied and engineering physics from Cornell University, USA, and her PhD in biophysics from the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry in Martinsried and the Technical University of Munich, Germany. She has worked as a postdoctoral fellow at Max Planck Institute for Brain Research in Frankfurt, Germany, and in the Nano-Optics Group at the University of Basel. Prior to joining USB, she was a research associate in the Single-Molecule Biophysics Group and a lecturer in statistics at Purdue University, USA.
Lasse Lingens is a research engineer at the Computer Graphics Laboratory at ETH Zurich. His main focus points throughout his studies at ETH Zurich were computer vision, computer graphics, robotics and machine learning. As his family has a rich medical background, he is especially interested in research that focuses on improving medical procedures via the integration and application of computer science.
Dr Fabian Lütolf is an R&D engineer at the Swiss Centre for Electronics and Microtechnology (CSEM) in Muttenz. His activities include the management and execution of projects related to the design, prototyping and scaled manufacturing of micro- and nanostructures. Dr Lütolf has a PhD in photonics and his current focus is the transfer of diffractive and plasmonic nanostructures to applications in life science.
Besides diffraction and plasmonics, Dr Lütolf’s research interests include a variety of manufacturing technologies with a focus on scalable processes. Some examples of the technologies that the CSEM has successfully applied include functional printing, photolithography and various embossing methods in order to pilot the fabrication of sensors, optical components and also banknotes and augmented reality devices.
Prof Andrew Macpherson is a Professor of Medicine at Inselspital Bern. His laboratory has worked on immune and non-immune mechanisms of host-microbial mutualism using animal models and translational work in human subjects. He has set up collaborations with Zimbabwean and Kenyan colleagues in order to address the problem of dysbiosis that triggers intestinal dysfunction and stunting in young children in low- and middle-income countries.
Zawadi Mageni Mboma, PhD holds an MPhil/PhD degree in Infectious and Tropical Diseases from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, UK, a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science, Geography and Earth Science and a Certificate in Leadership from Carthage College, USA. Her PhD studentship was embedded in a research project (ABCDR) that assessed the durability of three different insecticide-treated net products in Tanzania. She is currently engaged in the assessment of community acceptability and feasibility of installation of insecticide-treated eave nets and window screens for malaria control. She is an alumni of the Science of Eradication; Malaria course.
Dr Michele Magno is currently leading the centre for project-based learning at the Department of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering at ETH Zurich. He received his master and PhD degrees in electronic engineering from the University of Bologna, Italy, in 2004 and 2010, respectively. He has been working in ETH since 2013 and has become a visiting full professor at Mid University Sweden.
His current research interests include smart sensing, low power machine learning, wireless sensor networks, wearable devices, energy harvesting, low power management techniques, and extension of the lifetime of batteries-operating devices. He has authored more than 170 papers in international journals and conferences. Some of his publications were awarded as best papers awards in IEEE conferences such as IEEE International Conference on E-health Networking, Application & Services 2018, IEEE Sensors Applications Symposium (SAS) 2018, IEEE International Workshop on Advances in Sensors and Interfaces 2017 among others. He is a senior IEEE member and an ACM member. He also received awards from industrial projects or patents, such as the Top 20 Spark Award 2021, Spark Award Best 5 Invention 2018 and many IEEE papers (IEEE WiMob 2021), poster or demo awards.
Prof Sheila Makiala is head of the Department of Clinical Virology at the Institut National de Recherche Biomédicale (INRB) in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). She is currently involved in several research projects bringing together both local and international research institutions. Her research interests include epidemiology of emerging diseases, tropical infectious diseases and zoonosis control. She undertook residency in medical microbiology and graduate studies in tropical infectious disease. Through these additional trainings, she gained advanced knowledge and skills in human medical microbiology, including laboratory diagnosis of infectious agents (bacteria, viruses, fungi) and drugs susceptibility testing. The acquired specialized knowledge and skills were then applied in the field through work experience in laboratory and outbreak management in developing countries (DRC and Gabon). After finishing her PhD, she applied for a postdoctoral fellowship at Hokkaido University, Japan, under a program aimed at fostering global leaders in zoonosis control to build resilience against threats from emerging diseases. This postdoctoral fellowship has greatly contributed to enhancing her understanding of infectious diseases while applying the ‘One Health Approach’ for comprehensive and sustainable management of emerging infectious diseases.
Dr Adrià Martí i Líndez is a postdoctoral scientist working in Prof Christoph Hess’ group in the Department of Biomedicine of the University of Basel. After an MSc in genetics at the University of Barcelona in Spain, he recently completed his doctoral degree in Prof Walter Reith’s group in the Department of Pathology and Immunology at the University of Geneva. During his doctoral studies, he investigated how arginine metabolism modulates cancer-directed T cells. His research continues to focus on the metabolism of virus- and cancer-fighting CD8+ T cells and on how unveiling metabolic vulnerabilities in senescent CD8+ T cells can help to optimise COVID-19 immunotherapies.
PD Dr Matthias Matter is a surgical pathologist at University Hospital Basel, providing his knowledge of immunology and molecular analysis in the frame of the BRCCH-funded “Lessons From the Deceased to the Living and Back” project. Dr Matter studied medicine at the University of Bern, where he also received an MD-PhD in the field of tumour immunology and host-viral interactions. His research experience was further extended by a postdoctoral fellowship on tumour immunology at the National Institute of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, USA. He is a surgical pathologist with a sub-specialization in molecular pathology and works at the Institute of Medical Genetics and Pathology at University Hospital Basel with a main focus on molecular pathology and gastrointestinal pathology. His main research interests are immune responses against tumours and the role of chronic inflammation, such as that caused by hepatitis B or C virus, in tumour development. In the BRCCH FTC project (link below), Dr Matter is mainly involved in study design, histopathological examination and analysis of the immune response against SARS-Cov2 in the lungs and lymph nodes using gene expression analysis and CODEX.
|Prof Daniel Mäusezahl PhD, MPH, received his qualifications from UC Berkeley and heads the Household Health Systems research group at the Household Economics and Health Systems Research unit in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH). His research mainly deals with environmental, health and social impact assessment and he conducts health systems research with a portfolio focusing on surveillance and routine health data in infectious diseases in the Global South and North, food safety and environmental health interventions. His research in Switzerland focuses on the control of food- and waterborne diseases, maintaining a research station in the Andes and a work portfolio on integrated approaches to improve household, environmental and child health.
Emmanuel is a research scientist at Ifakara Health Institute (IHI) in Tanzania where he serves as a Deputy Head of the Vector Control Product Testing Unit (VCPTU). He leads several research studies on the evaluation of new vector control interventions including insecticide-treated bed nets (ITN), Indoor residual sprays (IRS), and mosquito repellents. In 2017, he was appointed to lead the Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) accreditation of the VCPTU. In 2021, the VCPTU was GLP Accredited on efficacy testing of new vector control products. Currently, Emmanuel is serving as a GLP Study Director in the VCPTU.
Emmanuel holds a Bachelor degree in Biotechnology and Laboratory Sciences and a Master of Science in Molecular Biology. He has several years of experience in the field of Malaria and Medical Entomology. Currently he is pursuing his PhD in Epidemiology at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute. His PhD research is on the field durability evaluation of piperonyl butoxide (PBO) ITNs and new methods for evaluating their durability in the field. Emmanuel is interested on new vector control product development, evaluations and new ways of testing and evaluating vector control interventions.
Prof Mirko Meboldt studied mechanical engineering at the University of Karlsruhe (KIT) in Germany and launched his academic career at the Institute of Product Engineering Karlsruhe (IPEK), where he completed a doctorate in the field of product development. He embarked on his industrial career at Hilti AG in Liechtenstein, where he was globally responsible for CAD/PDM systems, standardisation and development methods. In his last position at Hilti, he was responsible for global technology and product development processes. In 2012, he was appointed Full Professor of Product Development and Engineering Design at ETH Zurich. His main research focus is on the development of new products in the field of mechanical engineering industries, biomedical applications and associated technologies. Since spring 2020, he has been a driving member of the helpfulETH initiative, which develops technical solutions for the COVID-19 pandemic. This resulted, among other things, in the BRCCH-supported CoVent project, where he is a member of the organising committee and assists with the development of the low-cost ventilator.
Dr Noëmi Meier is a project manager working in Prof Emma Wetter Slack’s group in the Department of Health Sciences and Technology (D-HEST) at ETH Zurich. Before joining the group, she worked in infectious disease research in Switzerland and abroad. She holds a PhD in clinical research from the University of Basel. In her current role, she is supporting the Precision Microbiota Engineering for Child Health project to facilitate research activities across this Multi-Investigator Project.
Dr Thomas Menter is a consultant at the Institute of Medical Genetics and Pathology at University Hospital Basel (USB). His main diagnostic and research interests are haematopathology, nephropathology and paediatric and placental pathology. He contributes to the FTC project (link below) by providing expertise in nephropathology, electron microscopy and haemato-/immunopathology, as well as placental pathology. He performs autopsies of COVID-19 patients and evaluates autopsy histology.
Prof Kirsten Mertz is a senior pathologist affiliated with University Hospital Basel and Head of the Molecular Pathology and Cytopathology service at the Cantonal Hospital Baselland. She is a clinician scientist with more than 10 years’ (inter)national experience in clinical, molecular and digital pathology. Her scientific focus is on infectious pathology, immunopathology and molecular oncology. Prof Mertz is driven by a fascination for science and by an ambition to translate ideas into individual health innovation. The Molecular Pathology and Cytopathology lab’s main focus is on molecular diagnostics of cancer and the pathology of infections. The lab routinely uses NGS (next-generation sequencing) to characterize solid tumours and PCR-based analyses to detect specific pathogens in human biopsies. In parallel to routine diagnostics, the lab performs molecular biological experiments to support translational research. They are currently developing metagenomics assays to screen for pathogens in patient tissue samples.
|Prof Dana Charles McCoy is an assistant professor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE) in the USA. Her work focuses on understanding the ways that poverty-related risk factors in children’s home, school and neighbourhood environments affect the development of their cognitive and socio-emotional skills in early childhood. She is also interested in the development, refinement and evaluation of early intervention programs designed to promote positive development and resilience in young children, particularly in terms of their self-regulation and executive function. Prof McCoy’s research is centred around both domestic and international contexts, including Brazil, Ghana, Tanzania and Zambia. She has a particular interest in interdisciplinary theory, causal methodology and ecologically valid measurement. Before joining the HGSE faculty, Prof McCoy served as an NICHD National Research Service Award postdoctoral fellow at the Harvard Center on the Developing Child. She graduated with an AB in psychological and brain sciences from Dartmouth College and received her PhD in applied psychology with a concentration in quantitative analysis from New York University, USA. Prof McCoy’s work has been published in journals such as Developmental Psychology, Child Development, Pediatrics and The Lancet. She has presented her work to audiences around the world, including the WHO, UNICEF and the World Bank.|
Dr David McIlwain is a senior research scientist in the Department of Pathology at Stanford University, USA. He brings his expertise in advanced single cell analysis tools with the CODEX system. He studied in Canada, receiving his undergraduate degree from McGill University and his PhD from the University of Toronto, advised by Dr Tak W. Mak. His doctoral work used reverse genetics to discover a new factor controlling the production of inflammatory mediator TNF. He completed his postdoctoral training investigating viral pathogenesis at both the Department of Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Infectious Disease at Heinrich-Heine-Universität in Dusseldorf, Germany, advised by Philipp Lang, and the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at Stanford University, advised by Dr Garry Nolan. Dr McIlwain uses advanced single cell analysis tools including CyTOF and a multiparameter tissue imaging platform named CODEX to map systems-level immune responses to infections including SARS-CoV-2, Ebola, influenza, B. pseudomallei, and Zika in humans and animal models. He currently oversees a team examining sequelae and immunopathology of Ebola virus infections in West and Central Africa and acts as a subject matter expert for clinical trials.
After completing his master studies in molecular and cellular biology at the University of Heidelberg, Germany, Jan Michler joined the research group of Prof Andreas Moor in Basel in October 2020. Using a combination of single-cell RNA sequencing, immune cell receptor sequencing and antigen-binding specificities analysis, the group studies immune responses in high depth and resolution. In his PhD project, Jan investigates aspects of the development of human immune memory in the context of SARS-CoV-2 infections and vaccinations. This work yields fascinating insights into our body’s defence against pathogens.
PD Dr Benjamin Misselwitz is a senior gastroenterologist and clinical scientist based at Inselspital Bern and a collaborator on this BRCCH project (link below). He has a special interest in intestinal functional disease research. Recently, he has worked extensively with Prof Kerina Duri in Harare, Zimbabwe, on her extensive mother-baby cohorts, particularly seeking to understand how the development of the intestinal microbiota affects susceptibility to intestinal absorptive dysfunction.
Prof Möhler is Chair and Medical Director, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Saarland University Hospital, Germany. Her research interests include early life stress, adverse childhood experiences, child protection, child abuse, childhood trauma, stress resilience, parent-child-interaction and developmental psychopathology.
Prof Andreas Moor is an assistant professor in the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering (D-BSSE) at ETH Zurich. He studied medicine at the University of Bern. In 2010, he obtained an MD from the University of Bern, followed by a PhD in molecular cancer research from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL) in 2014. Following his postdoctoral fellowship at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel, Prof Moor was appointed as an SNSF Eccellenza Professor at the University of Zürich. Prof Moor and his team moved to the D-BSSE in June 2020 and he currently holds an appointment as a tenure-track assistant professor of systems physiology.
Sarah Moore BSc, DTM&H, MSc, PhD, PD is a medical entomologist and group leader in the Vector Biology Unit at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute and has been based for the last 15 years at Ifakara Health Institute (IHI), Tanzania. Sarah leads the IHI Vector Control Product Testing Unit that conducts laboratory studies, field trials and large-scale evaluations of interventions designed to protect individuals and communities from vector borne disease. Sarah’s research interests are focused on developing new and efficient ways to evaluate novel vector control technologies and in training the next generation of medical entomologists to tackle vector borne disease in a rapidly changing world.
PD Dr Andreas A Mueller is a passionate senior craniofacial surgeon who has been engaged in the clinical care of cleft lip and palate malformations for more than 15 years. He is heavily involved in basic and clinical research in this medical area. Since 2014, he has led the cleft lip and palate treatment centre at the University of Basel. This centre brings together all pertinent specialists for cleft care from University Hospital Basel, University Children’s Hospital Basel and the University Dental Clinic, with the objective of delivering the highest standard of care to the affected children and their families from birth to adulthood. He also serves as the Vice-President of the Swiss Society for Cleft Lip and Palate and Craniofacial Anomalies.
Convinced of the importance of biomedical engineering in surgery, he completed his PhD entitled “Complementing Surgical with Biomedical Engineering Methods to Evolve Lip and Nose Reconstruction” and further deepened his microsurgical training at the Department for Cranio-Maxillofacial Surgery in Amiens, France. His outstanding research has been supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation and he has been awarded the Helene Matras Prize (Austria) and the Bernd Spiessl and Hugo Obwegeser prizes (Switzerland).
Dr Josephine Muhairwe is the Country Director for SolidarMed (a Swiss-based health non-governmental organisation) in Lesotho. She is a Uganda-trained physician with a master’s in public health from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, UK. She is also currently pursuing a PhD in global health in the Department of Medicine at the Institute of Global Health at the University of Geneva. In addition to directing all the health-related work for SolidarMed in Lesotho, Dr Muhairwe’s research interests include investigating how low- and middle-income settings can better respond to their health and health system challenges through the process of identifying and implementing changes in policy and practices. She is particularly interested in innovative approaches to the treatment and management of infectious and chronic diseases that include improvements in access, coverage, quality or efficiency for marginalised rural populations. During her free time, she likes to travel, read and provide free medical treatment during medical missions.
Privilege T. Munjoma (MSc) is a DPhil student in the Immunology Department at the University of Zimbabwe College of Health Sciences. His thesis title is “Maternal Gut and Breast Milk Microbiota Diversity: Influences on Infant Gut Microbiota Colonization and Health within the First Two Years of Life.”
Dr Keelin Murphy is a collaborator on the MistraL project working on the validation and development of the CAD4COVID software. Dr Murphy completed her PhD on the automated analysis of chest CT in 2011 at University Medical Center Utrecht in the Netherlands. For several years, she worked as a postdoctoral researcher at University College Cork, Ireland, on the analysis of neonatal MRI and EEG, and she is now a member of the Diagnostic Image Analysis Group at Radboud University Medical Center at Nijmegen in the Netherlands. Her current research focuses on machine-learning analysis of medical images, primarily chest X-rays.
Dr Prasad K. K. Nalabothu is a research scientist at the oral and maxillofacial surgery clinic at University Hospital Basel. His primary research background is in cleft and craniofacial orthodontics, which he specialized in during his training in Taipei, Taiwan. He did his master’s in lingual orthodontics at the University of Basel and his skill set is complemented by his PhD in smart implants for tissue expansion in cleft palate defects of newborns.
Prof Michael Nash is a BRCCH co-investigator and tenure-track assistant professor with joint appointments at the Department of Chemistry of the University of Basel and the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering (D-BSSE) at ETH Zurich. Prof Nash earned a bachelor’s in biomedical cybernetics, graduating with the highest honours from UCLA, USA, in 2006. He has held internships at the California Institute of Technology/NASA and the Pacific Northwest National Lab in the USA and the Biomedical Engineering Department at the University of New South Wales, Australia. He earned a dual PhD in bioengineering and nanotechnology from the University of Washington, USA, in December 2010. Following postdoctoral work in applied physics at LMU Munich in Germany, he was promoted to group leader in May 2013. Prof Nash began his current position as a tenure-track assistant professor in Basel in September 2016. His research interests are in the areas of molecular engineering and biophysics, specifically focusing on single-molecule protein mechanical properties, protein and polymer engineering and the interface between synthetic and biological systems.
Prof Dr med Giancarlo Natalucci is a consultant (staff member) in neonatology and developmental paediatrics in the Department of Neonatology at University Hospital Zürich. The focus of his research is the neuromonitoring, long-term neurodevelopment, outcome predictors and supportive therapies of at-risk newborns such as preterm born children. Since 2019, he has been Director of the Larsson-Rosenquist Foundation Center for Neurodevelopment, Growth and Nutrition of the Newborn and an assistant professor with tenure track at the University of Zürich and University Hospital Zürich.
Associate professor Lusine Navasardyan is working as paediatric endocrinologist at the Arabkir Medical Center, Institute of Child and Adolescent Health from 2017, as well as at the Muratsan University Hospital, Yerevan State Medical University from 2005. She got her PhD diploma in 2014 in the research area of type 1 diabetes and thyroid autoimmunity in children and adolescents. She has participated in several research and clinical trials in endocrine field as an investigator, as well as took part in the national study of Armenia “The childhood obesity surveillance initiative (COSI)“, supported by WHO. She passed several clinical and research fellowships in Basel (Switzerland), Graz (Austria), Salzburg (Austria), Ulm (Germany) etc. Her research interests cover all areas of endocrinology.
Prof Javad Nazarian is a Professor at the University of Zurich, the Head of DMG Research Center at University Children’s Hospital, Zurich, and an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the George Washington University and Children’s National Hospital (CNH) in Washington, D.C. His research focus is to understand the molecular pathways driving childhood brain cancers and, most importantly, find ways for rapid translation of laboratory findings to the clinic. He has extensive expertise in forming and leading national and international collaborations. His research groups in Zurich and CNH focus on developing biorepositories, disease preclinical models, performing molecular analyses, drug assays, and correlative studies for ongoing clinical trials. Working in close collaboration with Pacific Pediatric Neuro-Oncology Consortium (PNOC), Prof Nazarian has helped to establish the DMG-ACT working group encompassing 16 international institutions across North America, Europe and Australia. The primary goal of the team is to accelerate the discovery of clinically translatable therapies for the treatment of childhood brain cancers.
Dr Ronny Nienhold is a senior postdoc in Dr Kirsten Mertz’s lab and Head of the Molecular Pathology lab at the Cantonal Hospital Baselland. In the frame of this FTC project (link below), he is responsible for the SARS-COV-2 experimental PCR. During his PhD, he developed custom NGS workflows in order to elucidate the molecular background of myeloproliferative diseases.
Prof Garry Nolan is the Rachford and Carlota A. Harris Professor in the Department of Pathology at Stanford University School of Medicine, USA. He is a BRCCH collaborator using CODEX technology to investigate the pathophysiology of COVID-19. He trained with Leonard Herzenberg (for his PhD) and the Nobelist Dr David Baltimore (for postdoctoral work in the first cloning/characterization of NF-B p65/RelA and the development of rapid retroviral production systems). He has published over 220 research articles, is the holder of 20 US patents and has also been honoured as one of the top 25 inventors at Stanford University.
Prof Nolan was the first recipient of both the Teal Innovator Award (2012) from the USA’s Department of Defense (a $3.3 million grant for advanced studies in ovarian cancer), and he also received a $3 million FDA BAAA “Bio-agent protection” grant from the FDA for a “Cross-Species Immune System Reference.” He also received an award for Outstanding Research Achievement in 2011 from the Nature Publishing Group for his development of CyTOF applications in the immune system.
Prof Nolan is making new efforts in the study of Ebola, having developed instrument platforms to deploy in the field in Africa to study Ebola samples safely without the need to transport them to overseas labs (funded by a new $3.5 million grant from the FDA). He is an outspoken proponent of translating public investment in basic research to serve public welfare.
Prof Nolan was the founder of Rigel Inc. (NASDAQ: RIGL, BINA) (a genomics computational infrastructure company sold to Roche Diagnostics) and serves on the Boards of Directors of several companies, as well as consulting for other biotechnology companies. DVS Sciences, for which he was Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board, sold to Fluidigm for $207 million (2014) on an investment of $14 million. His areas of research include hematopoiesis, cancer and leukaemia, autoimmunity and inflammation and computational approaches for network and systems immunology.
Prof Nolan’s recent efforts are focused on a single cell analysis advance using a mass spectrometry-flow cytometry hybrid device (CyTOF) and nanoscale imaging with the Multiparameter Ion Beam Imager (MIBI). The approaches use an advanced ion plasma source to determine the levels of tagged reagents bound to cells – enabling a vast increase in the number of parameters that can be measured per cell – either as flow cytometry devices (CyTOF) or imaging platforms for cancer (MIBI). Further developments in imaging are enabled by CODEX – a system that inexpensively converts fluorescence scopes into high dimensional imaging platforms. These efforts will enable a deeper understanding not only of normal immune function, trauma, pathogen infection and other inflammatory events, but also of detailed substructures of leukaemias and solid cancers in order to promote new understandings that will enable better management of disease and clinical outcomes.
Dr Julius Boniface Okuni is an Associate Professor of Veterinary Pathology and Head of Department of Veterinary Pharmacy, Clinical and Comparative Medicine at the College of Veterinary Medicine, Animal Resources and Biosecurity, Makerere University in Uganda. His research focuses on diagnostics of several neglected infectious diseases of animal and zoonotic significance, such as paratuberculosis, tuberculosis, rabies, African swine fever and several other diseases of veterinary importance. Applying the OneHealth concept, he has recently joined a team of researchers to work on tackling the challenges of SARS-CoV-2 using a mobile suitcase lab to validate a number of tests to be used at the point of need in resource-limited countries like Uganda. The mobile suitcase lab technology is simple, robust and cheap and can be used in a variety of disease outbreak situations to confirm a disease and in clinical settings to provide tests needed for patient care. He looks forward to applying this technology in other disease situation and make it more widely available for use in Uganda.
PD Dr med Michael Osthoff is a senior consultant in the Division of Internal Medicine at University Hospital Basel, where he an internal medicine and infectious diseases specialist. His research interests include investigating the role of the complement system in infections and ischemia injury, therapeutic drug monitoring of β-lactam antibiotics and the implementation of antibiotic/diagnostic stewardship programmes in the hospital. Dr Osthoff is the leader of the “Translational Immunology and Diagnostic Stewardship” research group and Head of Clinical Research at the Division of Internal Medicine at University Hospital Basel.
Dr Marta Palmeirim has a MSc in medical parasitology and PhD in epidemiology. She has mainly focused on the control of soil-transmitted helminth infections, and has implemented drug and health education interventions. Additionally, she has investigated potential nutritional issues related to these infections. In general, her interests lie in the field of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) and their control, elimination and eradication, among other public health issues. Her work has resulted in a total of 15 articles in the peer-reviewed literature, of which 11 are as first author. Currently, Dr Marta Palmeirim works as a Project Associate at the Swiss Center for International Health, Swiss TPH.
Dr Samantha Paoletti works as a life science technologies business development manager at the Swiss Centre for Electronics and Mictrotechnology (CSEM) in Muttenz. She is a cell biologist focusing on supporting the industrial sector with regard to miniature biosensors, fluidics and cell interface. Dr Paoletti will be working in the BRCCH-funded DAVINCI project as an academic collaborator, coordinating the CSEM’s different activities.
Dr Paoletti’s research interest is in human health and the development of innovative diagnostics for resource-limited settings. The CSEM’s technology platforms address the evolving needs of the domain of life sciences by utilizing the latest advancements in cell technologies, biomonitoring and lab automation, with the goal of narrowing the gap between applied sciences and industrialisation. To meet their partners’ needs, they draw on two decades of experience in functionalisation, biomaterials, microfluidics, fluid control, MEMS and AI in order to develop state-of-the-art tools for life sciences.
Prof Hans Pargger is Chief Physician and Director of the 44-bed intensive care unit at University Hospital Basel. In the frame of the BRCCH “Lessons from the Deceased to the Living and Back” project, Prof Pargger provides clinical expertise in intensive care and emergency medicine and also acts as ethical counsel. He received his medical degrees from the University of Basel. He is board certified in intensive care medicine, anesthesiology, preclinical emergency medicine and point-of-care ultrasound and has held a research fellowship at Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital, USA. He was President of the Swiss Society of Intensive Care Medicine from 2008 to 2010. Since 2004, he has been President of the Certification Commission of the Swiss Society of Intensive Care Medicine. In addition to this, he has been President of the ethics committee of University Hospital Basel since 2012 and a member of the Senate of the Swiss Academy of Medical Sciences since 2014.
Prof Dr med Daniel H. Paris is a physician, clinical researcher and Head of the Department of Medicine at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) since 2017. In 2018 was appointed Associate Professor in tropical and travel medicine at the University of Basel, and acts as the Medical Director in the context of industry-related trials.
Prof Paris graduated in human medicine from the University of Zürich in 1996 and pursued a career combining internal medicine with infectious and tropical diseases. He spent 12 years working in clinical research in Southeast Asia for the University of Oxford as coordinator of clinical tropical medicine research focusing on tropical rickettsial illnesses, diagnostics, clinical trials and causes-of-fever studies. He completed his PhD in clinical tropical medicine in 2011 (Open University) and was appointed Associate Professor in 2014 (University of Oxford), and is a Visiting Professor in Thailand since 2015 (Mahidol University).
Prof Paris is considered an internationally recognized expert and researcher in the field of tropical and travel medicine. His areas of interest include the causes of endemic febrile diseases, the evaluation and development of diagnostic methods, as well as clinical trials and translational research for neglected tropical diseases affecting rural populations worldwide.
In the context of the BRCCH, he is the lead investigator of the DAVINCI project and the TOOLS4BU project.
Prof Melissa Penny is a professor at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) and the University of Basel. Currently Head of the Disease Dynamics unit at Swiss TPH, she has more than 14 years’ experience in developing mathematical and computational models in order to provide quantitative evidence to support infectious disease control and elimination decisions.
Her most recent research focuses on data analysis and the development of mathematical models and algorithms in order to understand parasite, host and intervention dynamics, with the goal of informing decisions during product development through to implementation and policy recommendations. This work includes new approaches using mechanistic models to inform quantitative target product profiles for novel malaria tools and, under BRCCH funding, to inform novel medical interventions against SARS-Cov-2.
Prof Penny is also a member of the Data and Modelling expert group of the Swiss National COVID-19 Science Taskforce, which develops and applies simulation models to inform decisions on novel medical interventions against COVID-19 in Switzerland.
Prof Randall (Randy) Platt holds associate professorships at the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering (D-BSSE) at ETH Zurich and the Department of Chemistry at the University of Basel. Prof Platt studied biomedical engineering and chemistry at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, USA. In 2011, he obtained an MPhil in material science from Imperial College London, UK, and in 2016 he received a PhD in biological engineering from MIT, USA. After a joint postdoctoral fellowship between MIT, Harvard University, and the Broad Institute, he was appointed as a tenure-track assistant professor at ETH Zurich and the University of Basel in October 2016.
Prof Gerd Pluschke is a biochemist and heads the Molecular Immunology Group of the Swiss TPH. Before joining the Swiss TPH, he was working at the Max-Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics (Berlin, Germany), the Washington University (St. Louis, USA), the Basel Institute for Immunology and Ciba Pharma Research.
His research at Swiss TPH combines field and laboratory research in infectious disease with the major aim to develop new tools for disease control. Major activities include 1. investigations of host-pathogen interactions and vaccine design for malaria, 2. characterization of the molecular epidemiology of bacterial meningitis epidemics in the meningitis belt of Africa and 3. a broad research portfolio on the neglected tropical skin disease Buruli ulcer. This disease is primarily found in West and Central Africa and caused by Mycobacterium ulcerans.
The group's research on buruli ulcer is currently focused on drug discovery based on the screening of new actives against tuberculosis and the development of a rapid diagnostic test and of a mycolactone-based vaccine.
Michel Polak is a full professor at the Université de Paris (2002, permanent position), Faculty of Medicine. He is also head and staff physician (2002, permanent position) in paediatric endocrinology, gynecology and diabetology at the Hôpital Universitaire Necker Enfants Malades, Paris, France. He is a member of the INSERM (National institute for health and medical research) U1016 team and IMAGINE (Genetics Institute at Necker University Hospital) institute.
His fields of special interests comprise: growth disorders and their treatment, disorders of sex development, perinatal endocrinology, developmental biology, endoderm derived endocrine organ development (thyroid and pancreas) and their diseases, type 1 diabetes mellitus and monogenic diabetes in young children
His training took place in Paris and during postdoctoral fellowships in the Department of genetics and microbiology, Centre Médical Universitaire, Genève, Switzerland (1997) and at Harvard Medical School, Department of Neurobiology (Pr Potter) and Section of Immunology and Immunogenetics, Elliot P. Joslin Research Laboratory (Pr Eisenbarth), Joslin Diabetes Center, Boston, MA, USA (1989-1991).
Prof Diane Purper-Ouakil is professor of child and adolescent psychiatry at the University Hospital of Montpellier, France. She became head of the child and adolescent unit of the Saint Eloi Hospital in 2011. This unit has facilities for both inpatient and outpatient care for young patients and is specialized for children and adolescents with ADHD and eating disorders.
Additionally, Prof Purper-Ouakil is the vice-president of the Faculty of Psychiatry involved in the ongoing reform training curriculum for medical studies and member of the professional college of psychiatrists.
Prof Diane Purper-Ouakil aims to develop evidence-based psychological, neurophysiological and pharmacological treatments, especially for children and adolescents with challenging and enduring behavioural and emotional symptoms. She is involved in collaborative treatment studies and assessing parent programs-an important feature of comprehensive treatment plans for young people with complex needs.
Nila-Pia Rähle will be supporting the BRCCH-funded DAVINCI team in regulatory affairs and matters relating to quality management. She is a co-founder and COO of Effectum Medical, a legal manufacturer of medical devices offering an outsourced quality management system (QMS) solution.
Ms Rähle holds a master’s in biochemistry from ETH Zurich and a master’s in business management from IE Business School in Madrid, Spain. Her professional career includes different areas of the life science industry (pharma, biotech, medical devices) and she has worked for both leading global players and innovative start-ups. In her 20 years of business experience, she has held roles on national, international and executive levels. With her broad experience, she is able to manage all aspects along the entire value chain, with the key focus on project management, regulatory affairs and quality management.
Raghavendra (Raj) Ramachanderan is a PhD student in Prof Randall Platt’s group at the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering (D-BSSE) at ETH Zurich. He has a BSc in chemistry from the University of Regensburg and an MSc in molecular biotechnology with a major in bioinformatics from the Ruprecht Karl University of Heidelberg, both in Germany. His interests lie in the intersection of synthetic biology and microbial systems biology. As a doctoral candidate in the Platt group, his research focuses on the application and expansion of Record-seq technology in gut bacteria both experimentally and computationally in order to monitor the gastrointestinal tract and to glean insights into pathogenesis and disease development.
|Lucero Ramirez Varela is a research assistant at the EASEL Lab and the SEED Lab at the Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE) in the USA. Her research interests include socioemotional development in global contexts and peer interactions as mechanisms for fostering positive behaviours. Moreover, she is interested in developing and implementing educational interventions based on developmental science and prevention research. Before coming to the HGSE, she worked as a project manager in the Evaluation Centre at the University of The Andes in Colombia. There, she assessed school climate and socioemotional competencies in elementary school students. Previously, she was a project coordinator at Colombia’s National Ministry of Education, where she participated in the first national quality measurement of early childhood education services. She holds an EdM in prevention science and practice from the HGSE, an MSc in psychology from the University of The Andes and a bachelor’s in psychology from the same university.|
Ronja Rappold, MSc, is a PhD student working with Prof Viola Vogel and Prof Emma Wetter Slack in the Department of Health Sciences and Technology (D-HEST) at ETH Zurich. She is highly interested in studying how mechanobiological cues affect cell signalling, more particularly the mechanobiological impact on intestinal inflammation. In this Multi-Investigator Project, she is investigating pathology-associated extracellular matrix changes occurring in the gastrointestinal tract and other disease-implicated organs. Using immunohistochemistry and histology techniques, high-resolution imaging and advanced image analysis, she is aiming to find mechanobiological readouts that could be used as early diagnostic markers in rare genetic disorders of metabolism.
Abeelan Rasadurai is a medical student and junior researcher in Dr Andreas Mueller’s research group. He finished his undergraduate studies in medicine at the ETH Zurich and is currently undertaking a master’s degree in clinical medicine at the University of Basel. He is especially interested in clinical and translational surgical research. Guided by Dr Benito Benitez, he focuses on the clinical documentation and analysis of Cleft Lip and Palate Care and Healing.
Finja Rausch is a doctoral researcher at the Institute of Animal Hygiene and Veterinary Public Health at the University of Leipzig, Germany. She graduated in veterinary medicine from the University of Leipzig in 2021. Her research interests include infectious diseases, especially those caused by viruses, and the development of diagnostic assays. She supports the implementation of a suitcase lab for rapid detection of SARS-CoV-2 in low-resource settings.
Prof Srinivas Gosla Reddy is a craniofacial surgeon who specializes in treating patients born with or suffering from any form of facial defect. He received his Master of Dental Surgery (MDS) in the field of oral and maxillofacial surgery from Mangalore University in Karnataka, India, in 1996. Since 1997, he has been treating children with cleft and craniofacial defects in Hyderabad, India, where he later established the GSR Institute of Craniofacial and Facial Plastic Surgery, a 50-bed stand-alone state-of-the-art craniofacial centre. Recognizing the unmet needs of these children, he went on to further train in medicine and surgery at Dr. NTR University of Health Sciences in Andhra Pradesh, India. He also obtained a PhD from Radboud University in Nijmegen, the Netherlands.
Prof Reddy has trained extensively in various craniofacial centres in Europe, such as University Hospital Zürich, Poole Hospital in the UK, AV Sint Jan Hospital in Bruges, Belgium, and the university hospitals of Muenster, Leipzig and Halle in Germany. He is also a well-known teacher in the field of oral and maxillofacial surgery and is a professor attached to the Dr. NTR University of Health Sciences. For his distinguished work in the field of craniofacial surgery, he was awarded honorary fellowships in dental surgery by the Royal College of Surgeons in Edinburgh and London. His research focuses on cleft and craniofacial anomalies, and he is particularly interested in methods such as the morphofunctional repair of cleft lip and palate.
Prof Roland Regoes is an adjunct professor at the Institute of Integrative Biology (IBZ) at ETH Zurich. He has been studying infectious disease dynamics and evolution for two decades. Specifically, he has contributed to our quantitative understanding of the emergence and evolution of new infections, preclinical HIV vaccine trial design, pharmacodynamics and the population dynamics and evolution of various viral and bacterial pathogens within their hosts. His research is conducted in close collaboration with both experimentalists and clinicians.
Dr Klaus Reither is Head of the Clinical Research Unit and the leader of the Clinical TB Research Group at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH). He oversees and coordinates clinical research projects conducted by Swiss TPH and his research responsibilities comprise the set-up, implementation, coordination and supervision of clinical research projects, with an emphasis on TB clinical trials at Swiss TPH’s international partner organisations such as the Ifakara Health Institute in Tanzania, the National Centre of Tuberculosis and Lung Diseases in Georgia and SolidarMed in Lesotho.
Dr Reither received his medical degree from the Free University Berlin, earned an academic MD from the German Heart Centre Berlin, pursued an MSc in international health and a diploma in tropical medicine and public health from Humboldt University Berlin and completed a PhD in epidemiology at the University of Basel. He has clinical experience in internal medicine and is a specialist in diagnostic radiology.
Dr Daniel Richards is a co-investigator on the BRCCH-funded DAVINCI project and will be leading the effort at ETH Zurich to develop a smartphone app capable of analyzing and interpreting the project’s SARS-CoV-2 test. Dr Richards joined the deMello group at ETH Zurich as a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellow in early 2020 and has since focused on exploring the interface of synthetic biology, diagnostics and microfluidics. He has an active interest in point-of-care diagnostics, protein modification, synthetic biology and nanomaterials. Prior to joining ETH Zurich, Dr Richards was a postdoctoral researcher at Imperial College London, UK, where he was involved in developing nanomaterial-based diagnostic technologies for both infectious and non-infectious diseases. He completed his PhD at University College London, where he focused on applying novel chemical reactions to complex proteins with the aim of improving the functionality of therapeutically relevant biomolecules.
Dr Maren Roche is a scientific project manager for the international project on cleft lip and palate. She coordinates the project’s development and ensures a strong network with local and international institutes. Dr Roche has a PhD in cancer research from the Wellcome Trust Biocentre in Dundee, Scotland. Furthermore, she gained experience of immunological research during her postdoctoral work at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Germany, and increased her knowledge of cancer research during her postdoctoral studies at the National University of Ireland in Galway. In addition to her research experience, she also gained laboratory management skills at ETH Zurich. She is particularly interested in scientific research and its transition to application.
Carine Roese Mores has been a PhD student in Prof Shinichi Sunagawa’s group at ETH Zurich since September 2020. She was born in Brazil, where she studied biology (Diploma, 2016) and biotechnology and biosciences (MSc, 2018). From 2018 to 2020, she worked as a bioinformatician at Loyola University Chicago in the USA, focusing on human microbiome data analysis. Her main research interest within the group is to combine bioinformatic and experimental approaches in order to better understand the structure, function and diversity of the human microbiome.
Amanda Ross is a statistician at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health. Her work focuses on understanding the epidemiology and dynamics of malaria and the impact of different interventions. This involves designing and analyzing epidemiological studies, developing and applying statistical methods to estimate the underlying transmission dynamics and developing mathematical models of malaria to help evaluate the likely impact of control and elimination strategies. Prior to joining Swiss TPH, Amanda was based in Kenya, Uganda and the UK.
Dr Morten Ruhwald joined FIND (Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics) in 2019 as Head of the TB programme. He is a medical doctor with over 15 years of professional experience, including 4 years in clinical medicine and 12 years in research and development in the area of vaccines and diagnostics for TB.
Dr Ruhwald has been project lead on several diagnostic tests for latent M.tb infection, including specific skin tests and new simpler in vitro diagnostics in the IGRA family. He has worked extensively with international stakeholders in translational medicine and product development for poverty-related diseases.
Before joining FIND, Dr Ruhwald was the Chief Medical Officer and Head of Human Immunology at the Center for Vaccine Research at Statens Serum Institut in Denmark. Prior to that, he led the TB immunology group at the Copenhagen University Hospital. He obtained his medical degree and PhD from Copenhagen University in Denmark and has published more than 80 academic papers.
Prof Anavaj Sakuntabhai, MD, PhD is a medical doctor from Thailand. After his PhD on human molecular genetics at The Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, University of Oxford, in 2000, he joined the Institut Pasteur to develop a program on genetics of infectious diseases. He created the research unit of Functional Genetics of Infectious Diseases at Institut Pasteur in 2010 focusing on genetic susceptibility to dengue infection. He received Prix Dusquense in 2016 and i-Lab Grand Prix award from the French national challenge of innovation organized by the French Ministry of research in 2020 for development of new pentavalent dengue and Zika T cell vaccine. He coordinated European FP7 project on Dengue Framework for Resisting Epidemics in Europe (DENFREE). He is involved in investigating two recent global outbreaks of infectious diseases, Ebola and Zika. Currently, he is a coordinator of the Pasteur International Center for Research on Emerging Infectious Diseases (PICREID) – supported by the NIH. The project is implemented in West, Central Africa and South-East Asia, linking large observational multicenter cohort studies with basic scientific research and leading to increased preparedness for new epidemic threats in the region. Recently, he was appointed as the director of Institut Pasteur Japan office to establish transdisciplinary network on Emerging Infectious Diseases between Japan, France and countries in the Indo-Pacific region.
Robin Sandkühler obtained his M Sc in Computer Science from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany. In 2020 he received his PhD from the University of Basel. Currently, Robin is a postdoctoral researcher at the Center for Medical Image Analysis and Navigation at the Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Basel. He leads the research group for medical image segmentation. His research focus is the development of weakly supervised machine learning methods for medical image analysis. Furthermore, he is interested in computer-assisted diagnostics and the estimation of disease progression by combining different information resources.
Prof Dr Lea Sarrar is a psychodynamic child and adolescent psychotherapist and Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy at the MSB Medical School Berlin, Germany. Her research focuses on psychodynamic developmental and clinical child and adolescent psychology, with special interest in personality development in early childhood through adolescence. Prof Dr Sarrar also works as a supervisor and lecturer in the training of child and adolescent psychotherapists and in her own practice.
Prof Uwe Sauer is Professor of Systems Biology in the Department of Biology at ETH Zurich. His interdisciplinary metabolomics-based research focuses on microbial metabolism and host-microbe interactions.
Dr Miodrag Savic (MD, DDS) is a member of the Hightech Research Center in the Department of Biomedical Engineering (DBE) at the University of Basel. He is also a member of the Medical Additive Manufacturing research group at DBE. Dr Savic is part of the University of Basel’s Faculty of Medicine thanks to his participation in the curricular committee and the Faculty Assembly. He teaches first- and second-year students studying for master’s degrees in dental medicine. As Head of the suturing course for dental students since 2012, he has taught over 250 students. Since March 2020, Dr Savic has been delegated by the Department of Health to lead different projects for mitigating COVID-19.
Dr Savic received his medical and dental degrees from the University of Basel. He spent a clinical research year in the Stem Cell Center of Competence in the Department of Biomedicine at the University of Basel. He received his MD in the field of stem cell research and his DDS in the field of medical advanced materials in 3D printing. During his residency in general surgery in the neurosurgery clinic at University Hospital Basel, Dr Savic began a research collaboration with Dr Martin Sailer, which resulted in a common patent (Sailer M. and Savic M. 2016. Invasion cell culture system for use in drug discovery. European Patent Office).
Dr Spasenija Savic Prince is a senior pathologist with expertise in thoracic pathology and cytopathology at the Institute of Medical Genetics and Pathology at University Hospital Basel (USB). She received her medical degree from the University of Basel. After a residency in pathology and a two-year postdoctoral research fellowship at the Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, USA, she joined the faculty in 2009. As part of the thoracic disease management team, she works with colleagues from pneumology, oncology, surgery and radiation oncology to care for patients affected by lung and pleural disease. Her research is primarily focused on lung cancer and the investigation of predictive biomarkers. Dr Savic has published numerous original papers and reviews and is an editorial board member of Acta Cytologica.
Dr Marianne Schmid Daners graduated from ETH Zurich as a mechanical engineer in 2006 (Dipl. Masch.-Ing. ETH). Under the supervision of Prof Guzzella, she completed her doctorate on the topic of “Adaptive Shunts for Cerebrospinal Fluid Control” at ETH Zurich’s Institute for Dynamic Systems and Control in 2012. Dr Schmid Daners heads the institute’s Biomedical Systems Group as a senior scientist. At the interdisciplinary interface of clinical research and engineering, her passion is the pathophysiological understanding of the dynamics of the intracranial and cardiovascular systems. Her research focuses on the modelling, control and testing of biological systems, as well as on the development and control of biomedical devices for the treatment of heart failure and hydrocephalus. From the ETH Zurich side of the BRCCH-supported CoVent project, she is the leading member of the project’s organising committee.
Florian Schmidt is a PhD student in Prof Randall Platt’s group at the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering (D-BSSE) at ETH Zurich. He obtained his BSc and MSc from the Ruprecht Karl University of Heidelberg, Germany, working on CRISPR/AAV gene therapy. After a short stint in Prof Feng Zhang’s laboratory at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, USA, together with Prof Randall Platt, he transitioned to ETH Zurich, where they established the Record-seq technology used to create living microbial diagnostics.
Till Nikolaus Schnabel is a research engineer at the Computer Graphics Laboratory at ETH Zurich, where he recently obtained his MSc. During his studies, he focused on computer graphics, computer vision and machine learning. His main interest is the field of deep learning with graphical applications. Since his family has a strong medical background, he is interested in applying his knowledge to improving people’s lives.
Jan Schneeberger is a laboratory technician by training. In 2022, he completed the Swiss Matura Diploma in the field of Technics, Architecture and Life Sciences. He is currently laboratory manager in the Institute of Medical Genetics and Pathology at University Hospital Basel (USB).
Dr Torsten Schmitz is a Paediatrician and Paediatric Emergency Care Specialist working as clinical consultant in the Digital Health Unit at the Swiss Centre for International Health of the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute.
His work focuses on the development, implementation and evaluation of digital Clinical Decision Support Systems (CDSS) and Health Management Information Systems (HMIS) in LMIC. His current project engagements comprise the clinical coordination and deployment of decision support algorithms for paediatric consultations in primary health care clinics in Nigeria, Libya, as well as in refugee camps in Chad. Prior to his work for Swiss TPH, Dr Schmitz worked in tertiary and secondary paediatric hospitals in Berne, New Zealand and lastly as Paediatric Consultant in the Emergency Department of the University Children’s Hospital Basel (UKBB).
In parallel, he gained broad experience in tropical medicine during engagements in humanitarian aid projects. His main areas of clinical expertise include management of acute paediatric emergencies, malnutrition management, paediatric infectious and respiratory diseases. He has broad experience as instructor of medical teaching and training activities, including simulation scenarios.
Schmitz T, Beynon F, Musard C, Kwiatkowski M, Landi M, Ishaya D, Zira J, Muazu M, Renner C, Emmanuel E, Bulus SG, Rossi R. Effectiveness of an electronic clinical decision support system in improving the management of childhood illness in primary care in rural Nigeria: an observational study. BMJ Open. 2022 Jul 21;12(7):e055315.
Bernasconi A, Crabbé F, Adedeji AM, Bello A, Schmitz T, Landi M, Rossi R. (2019). Results from one-year use of an electronic Clinical Decision Support System in a post-conflict context: An implementation research. PLoS One, 14, e0225634
Pohl C, Mack I, Schmitz T, Ritz N (2017). The spectrum of care for pediatric refugees and asylum seekers at a tertiary health care facility in Switzerland in 2015. Eur J Pediatr; 176(12):1681-1687
Schmitz T (2009). Satisfaction with psycho-oncological treatment. A quality-assurance study at a university clinic for psychosomatics. Doctoral thesis. Munich, Germany: Technische Universität München. https://d-nb.info/1002051460/34
Schmitz T, Weis J, Herschbach P (2008). Qualitätssicherung in der Psychoonkologie. In: Dorfmüller M, Dietzfelbinger H, editors. Psychoonkologie. Diagnostik - Methoden - Therapieverfahren. Elsevier Verlag, Munich
Dr Samuel Schumacher joined the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND) in 2015 and is currently Evidence & Policy Lead across several FIND programmes, with a 40% focus on TB. He has a longstanding interest in the development and evaluation of technology to address global health problems and over 10 years of research experience focused on infectious disease diagnostics. Dr Schumacher has worked on a wide range of TB diagnostics projects, including large multicentre diagnostic accuracy studies and studies to directly measure the impact of TB diagnostics on health outcomes. He has extensive knowledge of medical research methodology, quantitative methods, evidence synthesis and policy development processes. He received his BSc and MSc in molecular biotechnology from the Technical University of Munich, Germany, and his PhD in epidemiology from McGill University in Canada.
Prof Dieter Armand Schumann is a senior scientist and maxillofacial surgeon. His main interests are cleft surgery, reconstructive surgery and microsurgery. He also has a great deal of experience in biomaterial science, especially cellulose research. He was Head of the Department of Maxillofacial and Plastic Surgery in Jena from 1983 to 2005. Prof Schumann is one of the founding members of the International Bone Research Association (IBRA), which was established in Zürich in 2004. In 2011, he went to Hyderabad, India, on an international OP mission. He also acts as a board member of POLYMET Jena e.V. and has been a senior research counsellor in Basel since 2007.
Dr Christian Schürch co-initiated the collaborative study of COVID-19 between the University of Basel and Stanford University, USA. He studied medicine and completed a PhD thesis in tumour immunology, followed by a board certification in general surgical pathology. He is currently a postdoctoral fellow in the Nolan laboratory at Stanford, investigating cancer immunology using highly multiplexed tissue imaging technologies. Dr Schürch has 44 peer-reviewed publications and is a co-inventor on two patents. He has been awarded a Swiss National MD-PhD Scholarship, a Hagmann Foundation Scholarship, a Cloëtta Foundation Scholarship, an SNSF Advanced Postdoc Scholarship and an SNSF Postdoc Scholarship. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including Best PhD Thesis, a Hemmi Foundation Award, a Stowell-Orbison Certificate of Merit, a Brupbacher Young Investigator Award, a Pfizer Research Award, a Lady Tata International Leukemia Award and an ASH Abstract Achievement Award, and he was also selected for the 2021 inaugural Arthur L. Irving Family Foundation Cancer Immunology Symposium.
Kathrin Sevecke is a child and adolescent psychiatrist and psychotherapist and systemic family therapist. She is a professor and director of the Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the University Hospital Innsbruck and the Hospital Hall in Tirol, Austria. She is a forensic expert in childhood and adolescence. Her main areas of research include personality pathology in children and adolescents, impulse control disorders, forensic psychiatry, eating disorders and attachment representation of adolescents. She is the co-editor of the "Praxis der Kinderpsychologie und Kinderpsychiatrie."
Carla Sharp, PhD is professor and associate dean for faculty and research in the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences at the University of Houston, USA. She is also director of the Adolescent Diagnosis Assessment Prevention and Treatment Center and the Developmental Psychopathology Lab at the University of Houston, USA. She holds adjunct positions at the University of Texas, USA, Baylor College of Medicine, USA, University College London, UK and the University of the Free State, South Africa. She has a longstanding interest in social cognition (mentalizing) as a cause and correlate of psychiatric disorder across the lifespan with a special focus on youth. She has published over 300 peer-reviewed publications, numerous chapters and eight books. A large proportion of her research uses Borderline Personality Disorder (and other personality pathology) to study where social-cognitive function goes awry. As such, she has significantly advanced scientific understanding of the phenomenology, causes and correlates of personality pathology in youth.
She is the recipient of the 2016 Mid-career award, North American Society for the Study of Personality Disorders and the 2018 Award for Achievement in the Field of Severe Personality Disorders from the Personality Disorders Institute in New York. She is the current associate editor for APA journal Personality Disorders: Theory, Research and Treatment, and a workgroup member for updating the American Psychiatric Association practice guidelines for borderlind personality disorder (BPD). Recent developments in her work reflect a translational focus to carry through the earlier focus on mentalizing to evaluate its function as mechanism of change in personality pathology as well as other attachment-related conditions and an interest in the DSM-5 alternative model of personality disorder. Her work has been funded by the NICHD, NIAAA, NIMH, the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation and other foundations.
Dr Andrew Shattock is a BRCCH consortium member and a senior scientist at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) with 10 years of experience in developing and applying mathematical models of various infectious diseases, including HIV/AIDS, malaria, COVID-19 and several neglected tropical diseases. He specialises in transmission model development, metaheuristic optimisation, optimal allocative efficiency and supervised machine learning. He has provided modelling evidence for more than 20 national governments and has worked as a consultant for the World Bank, the Global Fund, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC).
Dr Barbara Solenthaler, PhD, is a senior research scientist at the Computer Graphics Laboratory at ETH Zurich, where she heads research on simulation and animation. She is also affiliated with the Institute for Advanced Study at the Technical University of Munich, Germany, where she holds a Hans Fischer Fellowship awarded by Siemens AG. Her research focuses on physics simulations and animations for computer graphics. Dr Solenthaler is particularly interested in methods for efficient, robust and artist-controllable simulations and using data-driven techniques to transform and simplify workflows. In addition, she regularly serves on technical programme committees for major graphics conferences, including ACM SIGGRAPH, Eurographics and ACM SIGGRAPH / Eurographics Symposium on Computer Animation (SCA). In 2016, she served as one of the conference chairs of the ACM SIGGRAPH / Eurographics Symposium on Computer Animation. She has also been appointed as an associate editor of Computer Graphics Forum (CGF) and is a co-founder of Apagom AG, which provides a real-time fluid engine using machine learning. She received her PhD in computer science from the University of Zürich.
Peter Spies is a scientist at the Institute of Chemistry and Bioanalytics at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland (FHNW) in Muttenz. His research interests include the profiling of drug candidates (Biacore, ForteBio, Nanotemper, ITC and μDSC) and the development of enzyme- or antibody-based test systems (ELISA, vertical flow immunoassay, lateral flow immunoassay and enzymatic assays) for applications in clinical chemistry and in vitro diagnostics.
Mr Spies graduated as a laboratory technician with a major in organic chemistry from Ciba-Geigy AG in 1988. In 1997, he received a federal diploma as a senior lab technician. From 1989 to 1999, he was a research associate in Dr Daniel Gygax’s research team in first the Bioreaction Group at the Central Research Laboratories at Ciba-Geigy and later the Immunoanalytics and Pharmacokinetics Group in the Preclinical Development section of Ciba-Geigy AG/Novartis Pharma AG. He has been at the FHNW since 1999.
Dr Anna K. Stalder is a scientific assistant at the Institute of Medical Genetics and Pathology at University Hospital Basel. Her main focus is the curation and documentation of individual projects and the collection of data for the broad collaborations under this FTC project (link below). She also contributes to this project by providing expertise in multiplexed immunohistochemistry and data analysis, as well as translational science aspects.
Prof Wendelin Stark is a full professor at the Institute for Chemical and Bioengineering (IBS) at ETH Zurich. His research combines materials with specific functions for medical or industrial use. Prof Stark has developed nanoparticles for environmental applications: for example, to increase energy efficiency in water and solvent purification, to enable large-scale remediation or to create more environmentally friendly catalytic processes. He is the co-founder of 10 companies active in the areas of diagnostic reagents, nanoparticle synthesis, functional membranes and medical devices. In addition, he has written more than 330 papers and has obtained 40 patents.
Prof Daiana Stolz graduated from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, in 1997 and completed her clinical training in internal and pulmonary medicine in Germany, Switzerland, and the USA. She received a master’s degree in quantitative methods and public health from the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, USA, in 2008 and was appointed Professor of Respiratory Medicine by the University of Basel in 2016. She has been a leading physician at University Hospital Basel (USB) since 2009. She is a fellow of both the American College of Chest Physicians and the European Respiratory Society (ERS). Prof Stolz leads a translational research group on inflammatory airway diseases at USB and has authored more than 200 publications in peer-reviewed journals, including several studies on pulmonary and systemic biomarkers for the characterization of patients with COPD. She is a member of the editorial boards of the European Respiratory Journal and Chest and is the immediate past Chair of the ERS Education Council.
Dr Stefan Stübinger is a co-investigator on the DAVINCI project and will be supporting the project with regard to integrating the lateral flow assay, innovative saliva sampling and new lenses into a simple-to-use saliva test. He will perform user testing and several rounds of prototyping and improvements of the test device.
Dr Stübinger studied dentistry in Munich and did his specialization in oral surgery in 2006. He is a member of the Hightech Research Center for cranio-maxillofacial surgery in Basel. Prior to taking up this position in 2015, he was a member of the Competence Center for Applied Biotechnology and Molecular Medicine (CABMM) at the University of Zürich, where he was the leader of the Cranio-Maxillofacial Surgery and Implantology Group. He was awarded his habilitation in 2012.
Dr Stübinger holds various patents, has developed several medtech devices and is the initiator and co-founder of six spin-off companies. He is involved in numerous ongoing multi-disciplinary research projects aimed at developing a new standard to assess and monitor individual risk factors related to different diseases based on the evaluation of bodily fluids. His major aim and vision is to move from delayed reactive medical services to evidence-based predictive, preventive and personalized medicine (3P), which will lead to an increased level of health among the general population.
Prof Shinichi Sunagawa has been a professor in the Department of Biology (D-BIOL) at ETH Zurich since 2016. He was born in Germany, where he studied biochemistry (diploma, 2002) and marine ecology (MSc, 2005). In 2010, he graduated from the University of California, Merced, USA, with a PhD in systems biology. He then joined the Computational Biology group headed by Prof Dr Peer Bork at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Heidelberg, Germany, where he initially worked as a postdoc (2010–2011) and then as a research and staff scientist (2012–2016). Prof Sunagawa leads the Microbiome Research Group, whose research interests include the study of ecological and evolutionary factors that determine the structure, function and diversity of microbial communities. The group develops and combines bioinformatic and experimental approaches in order to integrate quantitative “meta-omics” readouts with contextual information, with the goal of better understanding and predicting the role of environmental microorganisms and the underlying mechanisms of host-microbial homeostasis.
Tanmay Tanna is a PhD student in Prof Randall Platt’s group at the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering (D-BSSE) at ETH Zurich, where he is co-supervised by Prof Gunnar Rätsch in the Department of Computer Science (D-INFK). His research focuses on creating computational tools for synthetic biology and integrating different types of omics data for health and diagnostic applications. He completed his MSc in biology with a major in molecular health Sciences at ETH Zurich. During his MSc, he focused on computational biology, testing algorithms for time-series RNA-seq data analysis and predicting protein structural changes by applying machine learning to NMR spectra. Prior to joining ETH, he completed a BTech in biotechnology at the National Institute of Technology in Warangal, India. During his bachelor’s degree, he completed a research internship at the University of Tokyo and undertook his thesis as an Erasmus research fellow at the Warsaw University of Life Sciences in Poland.
Dr sc Alexander Tanno supports Prof Janos Vörös in a coordinative and scientific capacity. He has worked with Prof Vörös for many years and together they are the lead inventors of the technology upon which their BRCCH projects are built. During his doctoral studies in Prof Vörös’ lab, Dr Tanno gained the scientific and biosensing know-how to successfully implement the new technology. ETH has now appointed him to translate the scientific findings into a commercializable format in order to ensure that this invention is used to improve the health of as many patients as possible.
Dr Ethan Taub is a senior staff neurosurgeon and Head of Functional Neurosurgery in the Department of Neurosurgery at University Hospital Basel (USB). In the frame of this project (link below), he provides clinical expertise in neurosurgery, neurology and encephalitis. He received his undergraduate and medical degrees from Harvard, interned in surgery at the Massachusetts General Hospital and was resident and chief resident in neurosurgery at The New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center in New York City, USA. Thereafter, he received special fellowship training in functional neurosurgery as the E. H. Botterell Fellow at the Toronto Western Hospital in Canada. He came to Switzerland in 1996 as a Moseley Traveling Fellow of Harvard Medical School and thereafter served as a staff neurosurgeon (Oberarzt) at University Hospital Zürich and Inselspital Bern and as an attending neurosurgeon (Belegarzt) at the Klinik Im Park in Zürich. He has worked in Basel since 2007. His clinical activities there cover functional/stereotactic and general neurosurgery, and his main research focus lies in functional neurosurgery. Dr Taub is a member of the editorial board of Clinical and Translational Neuroscience and he has published numerous articles in peer-reviewed journals and multiple textbook chapters.
Gianpaolo is a committed environmental expert and project manager with 13 years of experience. During his career, he has developed a set of transferable skills including management, problem solving, communication and technical experience. This is in addition to his scientific background and passion for natural environment-related topics spanning from biodiversity and sustainability to urbanization and public health.
At Swiss TPH he has been working as a project manager on international malaria projects funded by international donors such as the Melinda and Bill Gates Foundation, Clinton Health Access Initiative and The Global Fund. He is also a project coordinator ensuring an efficient work flow of the internal team including assisting the preparation of grants, contracts and budgeting, but also recruitment from setting the adverts to the interviews and on-boarding. In his current role, he is assisting a team of epidemiologists in any tasks where business skills are required while maintaining and developing remote relationships with a multi-national team based across the world.
Sumaiyya Thawer is a PhD student of the Analytics and Intervention Modelling Group at the Swiss TPH. Her project aims to explore the utility of routine health facility data for malaria risk stratification and surveillance.
Sumaiyya has over 6 years’ experience working in Monitoring & Evaluation in Tanzania. She currently provides technical support to the National Malaria Control Program of mainland Tanzania for various malaria surveillance activities under the Towards Elimination of Malaria in Tanzania (TEMT) Project of Swiss TPH.
Dr Samuele Tosatti is the CEO of SuSoS AG.
Dr Florian Traversi has been a postdoctoral researcher in the research groups of Prof Matthias Baumgartner and Dr Sean Froese in the Division of Metabolism at the University Children’s Hospital Zürich since September 2020. He obtained a BSc degree in Biomedical Sciences from the Edinburgh Napier University, Scotland, and an MSc degree in Pathophysiology from the University of Strasbourg in France. During his PhD studies at the Institute of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine, Bern, he investigated the role of MAPK and NOTCH pathways in thyroid cancer. His current focus is to identify how single gene defects lead to disturbed metabolic networks in vitamin B12 and folate metabolism.
Dr Johannes Trück is a consultant in infectious disease and immunology at University Children’s Hospital Zürich and a group leader at the hospital’s Children’s Research Center. His main research interests focus on translational work in paediatric infectious disease, vaccines, innate errors of immunity, B cells and immune repertoire profiling.
Dr Ronald Tynes is a scientist at the Institute of Chemistry and Bioanalytics (ICB) at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland (FHNW) in Muttenz. Dr Tynes and his team will be supporting the DAVINCI team with the isolation and purification of COVID-19 antibodies from saliva and blood samples and with the development of a lateral flow assay to detect COVID-19 antibodies in saliva.
Dr Tynes’ research interests include diagnostics biochemistry and biotechnology. He received his PhD in biochemistry and toxicology from the North Carolina State University in the USA in 1984, followed by postdoctoral fellowships at the National Institutes of Health (USA) and Ciba-Geigy AG (Switzerland). His employment experience includes pharmaceuticals R&D at Sandoz AG and Novartis AG in Switzerland, as well as involvement in two start-up companies. He has been at the FHNW since 2008.
Prof Alexandar Tzankov is a surgical pathologist and Head of the Department of Histopathology and Autopsy at the Institute of Medical Genetics and Pathology at University Hospital Basel. He is a member of numerous national and international scientific societies, such as the European Association for Haematopathology, the European Bone Marrow Working Group (of which he is also President Elect) and the International Council for Standardization in Haematology. He is also an editorial board member of Pathobiology and an official expert in the field of pathology for the Swiss Accreditation Authority. His major interests and diagnostic expertise lie within haematopathology and mediastinal pathology. Alongside intensive tissue-based research activity on the interaction between SARS-CoV-2 and the human body in COVID-19, his research group is currently involved in translational investigations and precision medicine of lymphomas, particularly clonal relationships, the molecular evolution of relapsing lymphomas and deciphering the genetic landscape of marginal zone lymphomas. He has authored or co-authored >370 papers (orcid.org/0000-0002-1100-3819). In the framework of the FTC project (link below), Prof Tzankov leads the execution of autopsies, tissue collection, study design, histopathological examination, immunohistochemical examination, in situ hybridization examination, interpretation of gene expression data and basic statistics.
Dr Tom Valentin is a senior R&D engineer in the Liquid Handling and Sensing division at the Swiss Centre for Electronics and Microtechnology (CSEM). He will be supporting the DAVINCI team in the areas of sample preparation, sample collection and device prototyping needs. Dr Valentin is a mechanical and biomedical engineer with extensive experience in tissue engineering, biomaterials, microfluidics and 3D printing. His focus at the CSEM is on a range of topics including tissue engineering, microfluidics and contamination detection.
The CSEM’s technology platforms address the evolving needs of the life science domain by utilizing the latest advancements in cell technologies, biomonitoring and lab automation. The goal is to narrow the gap between applied sciences and industrialization. To meet their partners’ needs, they draw on two decades of experience in functionalization, biomaterials, microfluidics, fluid control, MEMS and AI in order to develop state-of-the-art tools for life sciences.
Prof Bram van Ginneken is Professor of Functional Image Analysis at Radboud University Medical Centre in Nijmegen, the Netherlands, where he has been Co-Chair of the Diagnostic Image Analysis Group in the Department of Radiology and Nuclear Medicine since 2010. He also works for Fraunhofer MEVIS in Bremen, Germany, and is one of the founders of Thirona, a company that provides analysis of medical images. Prof van Ginneken studied physics at the Eindhoven University of Technology and Utrecht University in the Netherlands. In March 2001, he obtained his PhD on computer-aided diagnosis in chest radiographs from the Image Sciences Institute in Utrecht. From 2001 to 2009, he led the Computer-Aided Diagnosis group at the Image Sciences Institute, where he still holds an associate faculty position. He has (co-)authored over 200 publications in international journals. He is also a member of the editorial board of Medical Image Analysis and was elected to the Fleischner Society in 2017. He has pioneered the concept of challenges in medical image analysis in which multiple teams apply their algorithm to the same test data set in order to solve a particular medical image analysis task so that a fair comparison can be made.
Prof Viola Vogel is a professor in the Department of Health Sciences and Technology (D-HEST) at ETH Zurich, where she leads the Laboratory of Applied Mechanobiology. With her background in physics and bioengineering, she pioneered the rapidly growing field of mechanobiology and its medical applications, with a focus on adhesins and extracellular matrix assembly and repair. She has discovered many structural mechanisms whereby mechanical forces can turn proteins into mechano-chemical switches, for which she was awarded an ERC Advanced Grant for research entitled “Proteins as Mechano-Chemical Switches.”
Prof Ferdinand von Meyenn is a professor in the Department of Health Sciences and Technology (D-HEST) at ETH Zurich. His group aims to gain insights into the complex relationship between nutrition, metabolism and the epigenome. The group’s work includes the development and use of single cell and next-generation sequencing techniques along with human and murine in vivo and in vitro models and genome-wide computational and bioinformatic analysis in order to drive fundamental biological discovery and to translate these findings into potential therapies for human metabolic diseases and developmental disorders.
Prof Janos Vörös is a professor at the Institute for Biomedical Engineering at the University of Zürich and the Department for Information Technology and Electrical Engineering (D-ITET) at ETH Zurich, where he has headed the Laboratory for Biosensors and Bioelectronics since 2006. He obtained his PhD in biophysics from Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest and came to ETH Zurich in 1998. His research interests include bioelectronics, biosensors, bottom-up neuroscience, biophysics and biointerfaces. He has co-authored over 200 peer-reviewed scientific publications and has supported countless successful scientific and entrepreneurial careers and start-ups.
Dr Jordyn Tinka Wallenborn is a postdoctoral researcher at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH). Her work focuses on understanding the relationship between human milk and lactation and early childhood development. She is also interested in the impact of individual, interpersonal and societal factors on breastfeeding practices and in identifying interventions to support breastfeeding mothers. Before joining Swiss TPH, Dr Wallenborn completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of California Berkeley Center of Excellence in Maternal, Child, and Adolescent Health in the USA. She graduated with a BA in community health from Minnesota State University Moorhead, an MPH with a concentration in infectious disease management from North Dakota State University and a PhD in epidemiology from Virginia Commonwealth University.
Originally a biologist, Dr Oliver Weingart is an alumnus of the Innovation & Entrepreneurship Lab at ETH Zurich, the Pioneer fellowship, and Wyss Zurich. He has led medical device development teams bringing Class II and III medical products ranging from tissue-engineered blood vessels to mechatronic devices to IoT solutions into a clinical setting. Dr Weingart has worked on his own products in the past and is now supporting customers via konplan systemhaus AG in their device and product development. He is currently working as a project leader for medical device and IVD product development, mainly in the area of mechatronics and software engineering. Furthermore, he consults with customers on the requirements for achieving regulatory compliance in order to allow clinical application and attain CE certification. He is an expert in most applicable norms, guidelines and regulations (GMP, GCP, ISO 13485, IEC 62304, ISO 62366, ISO 14971, MDD/MDR and IVDD/IVDR).
Prof Emma Wetter Slack is a professor at the Department of Health Sciences and Technology (D-HEST) at ETH Zurich. The Wetter Slack group’s research focuses on understanding and manipulating the interactions between microbes and host on microbial surfaces, particularly in the intestine. Their work involves developing novel mucosal vaccines for application in human and veterinary medicine, as well as establishing unique tools for the functional analysis of the microbiota in animal models. In combination, this will allow the group to rationally and robustly manipulate host-microbiota and host-pathogen interactions for the promotion of health.
Pascal Winnen will be supporting the BRCCH-funded DAVINCI project with data management, GCP auditing and app interface development. He is the CEO of Hemex and has 20 years of experience in the quality assurance and operational management of global clinical trials within the pharmaceutical and medical device industry. He has expert knowledge of study feasibility and budgeting, protocol development, submissions to regulatory authorities and ethical committees, site and study management, monitoring and auditing, vendor management and study logistics, data management, archiving, reporting, publishing and filing for marketing approval for phase I, II, III and IV trials, product quality review, management of batch documentation and QP/FvP batch release. He is also a certified lead auditor and has performed numerous worldwide vendor audits against cGxP standards, including co-monitoring with CRAs. He has prepared and hosted multiple FDA, Swissmedic and EMA license-to-operate and pre-approval inspections. He has a BSc in telecommunication engineering and a MSc in clinical research in addition to regular quality assurance and regulatory training. He is also a serial entrepreneur in human and animal healthcare start-ups.
Dr Mathias Wipf is working as a guest scientist at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland (FHNW) in Muttenz. He is developing novel in vitro diagnostics technologies for rapid and point-of-care testing. Dr Wipf is a co-founder and CEO of MOMM Diagnostics, a start-up company developing rapid tests for preeclampsia, a dangerous pregnancy condition.
Dr Wipf’s background is in nanoscience and physics with a focus on biosensor technologies. He is an innovation-driven scientist and entrepreneur with a strong interest in novel sensor concepts for healthcare and the biomedical industry, striving to understand fundamental processes and to implement technologies to improve quality of life.
Prof Christian Wolfrum is a professor in the Department of Health Sciences and Technology (D-HEST) at ETH Zurich. His research group’s main interest is in understanding molecular mechanisms regulating adipocyte formation and activity. The lab uses a translational approach from mice to men in order to elucidate the molecular mechanisms that are the underlying cause of altered adipocyte formation and activity in different models of obesity-associated metabolic disorders, with a special emphasis on the analysis of gene expression, post-translational modifications and lipid species in mouse models and human patients.
Julia Wolleb studied mathematics at the University of Basel, with a main focus on Numerics and Algebra. She received her Master’s degree in 2018, with a thesis at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute in the Mathematical Epidemiology group.
Currently, Julia is a researcher at the Center for medical Image Analysis and Navigation (CIAN) at the Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Basel. Julia’s research has focused on finding new deep learning algorithms for anomaly detection and localization in medical images. Her work has explored different approaches for tasks such as segmentation, weakly supervised anomaly detection, image-to-image translation and domain adaptation. The applicability of deep learning methods in real-world scenarios is of great interest to her, and Julia is enthusiastic about finding solutions to establish reliable image analysis methods in everyday applications.
Mark Zander graduated from RWTH Aachen in Germany in 2020 and holds a master’s degree in mechanical engineering. Post-undergrad, he specialised in medical engineering with a focus on cardiovascular engineering. During his studies, he also worked as a student research assistant at the Institute of Applied Medical Engineering (AME) in the Department of Cardiovascular Engineering (CVE) at RWTH Aachen. His research work included the design, testing and analysis of membrane oxygenators and blood pumps. After academic exchanges during his studies at the Technion Institute of Technology (Israel) and Politecnico di Milano (Italy), he wrote his master’s thesis at Monash University (Australia) on the topic of experimental flow analysis in membrane oxygenators. In September 2020, he joined the Product Development Group Zurich (ETH Zurich) and the BRCCH-supported CoVent project as a PhD student. He is driven by the desire to gain a deeper understanding of pathophysiological lung diseases in order to improve the outcome of mechanical ventilation treatments for patients.
|Prof Ce Zhang is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at ETH Zurich. He believes that by making data—along with the processing of data—easily accessible to non-expert users, we have the potential to make the world a better place. His current research focuses on building data systems to support machine learning and to help facilitate other sciences. Before joining ETH, Prof Zhang was advised by Christopher Ré. He finished his PhD round-tripping between the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Stanford University in the USA, and he spent another year as a postdoctoral researcher at Stanford. He contributed to the research efforts that won the SIGMOD Best Paper Award and the SIGMOD Research Highlight Award, and he has featured in special issues of journals including Science, Communications of the ACM, the “Best Papers of VLDB 2015” special issue of The VLDB Journal and Nature. His work has also been reported by The Atlantic, WIRED, Quanta Magazine, The Verge and others.|
Dr Jakob Zimmerman is a postdoctoral scientist who completed his PhD in Berlin and is based with Prof Andrew Macpherson in Bern. He has a particular interest in mucosal T cell responses and has been working in collaboration with Prof Randall Platt’s group in order to operationalize their Record-seq tool as a system for interrogating the intestinal intraluminal environment in the living gastrointestinal tract.
Dr Carl Zinner is an applied mathematician working on various bioinformatics projects for the Department of Biomedicine at the University of Basel. Within his role in this FTC project (link below), he helps with the analysis of large-scale biological data. Dr Zinner received his undergraduate degree from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland and completed an exchange year at the University of California San Diego in the USA. After obtaining his Master of Quantitative Finance in Sydney, Australia, he gained experience as a financial markets data scientist in Geneva. Thereafter, he completed a PhD in theoretical physics at the Chair of Polymer Physics and Complex Fluids at ETH Zurich. His thesis investigated numerical simulations of gas flows at extreme scales. These occur during the re-entry of space vehicles, but also at micro scales in the lung. Before joining the COVID-19 project, he worked as an independent freelancer, utilizing his statistical and computational knowledge in machine learning and data projects.
In 2016, Dr Nicole Zoratto obtained her master’s degree in Pharmaceutical Chemistry and Technologies at Sapienza, University of Rome (Italy). Before graduating, she undertook her 8-month master research project at the Institute of Pharmaceutical Science, King’s College London, under the supervision of Prof Cécile A. Dreiss. In the same year, she started her PhD in Pharmaceutical Science at Sapienza, University of Rome. The research project was focused on the development of innovative polysaccharide-based scaffolds for drug delivery applications. From November 2018 to August 2019, she joined the Khademhosseini laboratory at California Nanosystems Institute at UCLA as a visiting graduate researcher. Specifically, her research project was mainly focused on the microfluidic assisted particle formations, followed by particle annealing to develop soft and beaded-based scaffolds for tissue engineering applications. She earned her PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences in December 2019 and continued to complete one year of post-doctoral research on polysaccharide-based hydrogels and nanogels in the Department of Drug Chemistry and Technologies, at Sapienza, University of Rome.
Prof Natalia Zvereva is a medical psychologist. She is a professor and heads the Department of Neuro- and Pathopsychology in the Faculty of Clinical and Special Psychology, Moscow State University of Psychology and Education.
Since 1999, she is the Deputy Chairman of the Board of the Association of Child Psychologists and Psychiatrists (ACPP). She is a member of a number of professional communities of psychologists, a member of the editorial board of several journals, supervised 8 PhD theses in psychology and authored more than 100 scientific publications and several textbooks.
She did her PhD on the "Features of the formation of visual perception in children with schizophrenia" under the guidance of Yu.F. Polyakov. She graduated with honors from the Faculty of Psychology of Lomonosov Moscow State University in 1978 for her bachelor studies.