Clinical Mycobacteriology and Epidemiology
Welcome to Stellenbosch University

Division of Molecular Biology and Human Genetics

​​​​​Clinical Mycobacteriology and Epidemiology (CLIME) Group​​

Members

Grant-Theron.jpgGrant Theron
Principal investigator
Email: gtheron@sun.ac.za


Grant is interested in improving how patients with TB or drug-resistant TB are diagnosed, enhancing our understanding of TB transmission, and investigating whether the microbiome has any role in TB pathogenesis. Grant trained at the University of Cape Town and University College London. When he isn't thinking about TB, he is probably on Table Mountain.

ResearchGate profile
Google Scholar profile
NCBI MyBibiliography

 

Post-doctoral fellows and research students:

Rebecca_Tadokera.jpgRebecca Tadokera
Research Scientist
Email: rebec@sun.ac.za

Rebecca ‘s research interests lie in understanding the molecular epidemiology of TB as well as improving the diagnosis of drug resistant, drug sensitive and latent tuberculosis using novel molecular tools. Rebecca is an amateur runner and is an avid reader of non-fiction books. 

ResearchGate profile
Google Scholar profile

 

 

Hridesh Mishra
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Email: hrideshkmishra@gmail.com

Hridesh is investigating the infectiousness of TB patients and the aerobiology of M. tuberculosis. Hridesh is a disciplined Ashtanga yoga practitioner, he loves watching stand-up comedy shows, movies and series.

ResearchGate profile
Google Scholar profile

 

  
Charissa Naidoo
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Email: ccnaidoo@sun.ac.za

Charissa is leading the study of the microbiome and TB, specifically the impact of long-term TB treatment on the microbiome, amongst other aspects. Charissa makes a mean biryani!”

ResearchGate profile
Google Scholar profile



Byron Reeve
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Email: byronreeve@sun.ac.za

Byron is leading the evaluation of several new TB diagnostic, where he is measuring their impact in different settings. Byron loves road running and competing in half marathon races. When he's not running, he's playing video games.

ResearchGate profile
Google Scholar profile

 

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Suventha Moodley

Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Email: suventha@gmail.com

Suventha is involved in the study of the microbiome and TB. Sue loves making her own jewellery and studying makeup tutorials

   


 


 
Georgina Nyawo
PhD student
Email: georginan@sun.ac.za

Georgina is studying the microbiome in the context of extra-pulmonary TB, as well as several other areas. Georgina loves to sing... at church, karaoke, in the lab, everywhere… 

ResearchGate profile

 

Rouxjeane Venter
PhD student
Email: rouxjeane@sun.ac.za

Rouxjeane is studying how the infectiousness of patients changes during the course of treatment, as well as diagnostic test results. Rouxjeane loves anything to do with Star Wars.

ResearchGate profile
Google Scholar Profile

 

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Zama Mahlobo​

PhD student
Email: pzamah@sun.ac.za
Zama is working on investigating the infectiousness of TB patients and the factors associated with the airborne survival of Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Zama likes playing pool and her favorite TV shows are "Family guy" and "American dad". ​

 


 


Brigitta Derendinger
PhD student and Technical Officer
Email: brigitta@sun.ac.za

Brigitta is working on improving the diagnosis of drug-resistant TB by optimising and evaluating new tests, and developing phenotypic methods for new TB drugs. Brigitta enjoys needlework, Lego and wine appreciation.

ResearchGate profile

 

   
  
S.-Naidoo-photo.jpgSamantha Pillay
PhD student
Email: samantha.naidoo@nhls.ac.za

Samantha is based at a National Health and Laboratory Service laboratory in Cape Town, where she routinely performs high volumes of tests for drug-resistant TB, and uses these data towards her studies. Samantha loves travelling and trying out new recipes.

ResearchGate profile

 

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Gcobisa Ndlangalavu

PhD student
Email: gcobisa@sun.ac.za

Gcobisa is investigating new on-site TB diagnostics for newly diagnosed people living with HIV, as well as HIV viral load testing for monitoring people living with HIV already on antiretroviral treatment. Gcobisa loves going to the gym and enjoys watching reality shows and series.

 

 


 


Yonass.jpg​Yonas Ghebrekristos
PhD Student
Email: yonasg​@sun.ac.za

Yonas is working on improving the diagnosis of TB and drug-resistant TB (including heteroresistance) in a high volume programmatic laboratory using novel molecular tools . He is based at a National Health and Laboratory Service laboratory in Cape Town. In his spare time, Yonas loves playing football and watching sport. 

ResearchGate profile



Tatenda Mujuru
MSc student
Email: tatmujuru@sun.ac.za

Tatenda is studying the performs of different diagnostics tests for drug-resistance in the context of heteroresistance, which is a significant clinical problem. Tatenda is an avid basketball player.

ResearchGate profile

 
 

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Stephanie Minnies

MSc Student
Email: stephm@sun.ac.za

Stephanie is working on novel and rapid tests for diagnosis of tuberculosis using non-sputum specimens. "It's wingardium leviOsa, not leviosAH."

   
 
 


Stephanie.JPG
Loren Rockman

Honours Student
Email: rockman@sun.ac.za

Loren is investigating the yield and accuracy of GeneXpert Ultra in patients with presumptive EPTB. Loren enjoys spending a fair amount of time in the kitchen and loves going on long road trips.

   
 


 Laboratory staff:

Selisha Naidoo​
Technical Officer
Email: selisha@sun.ac.za

Selisha performs diagnostic testing, sample processing, reporting of results and co-ordinates with running and maintenance of the lab. Selisha is obsessed with cars, literature & art and when isn't working, can be found hiking or at the beach​.

ResearchGate profile

 

 

Zaida Palmer
Technical Officer
Email: zaida@sun.ac.za

Zaida oversees specimen processing and diagnostic testing at multiple sites in the field, as well as the biobanking of specimens at the main lab. Zaida loves cooking and shopping for clothes.

ResearchGate profile

 

 

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Happy Tshivhula

Research Assistant
Email: tshivhula@sun.ac.za

Happy attends to various day to day laboratory tasks and assists with specimen processing, DNA extractions and diagnostic testing across several studies. Happy is a massive soccer and wresting fan

ReasearchGate Profile

  

NANDI NIEMAND.jpg
Nandi Niemand 

Research Assistant
Email: nniemand@sun.ac.za

Nandi attends to various day to day laboratory tasks and assists with diagnostic testing and sample collection for multiple studies. After a busy week Nandi likes to escape the city life. You will probably find her unwinding with a glass of wine and her dogs  always close by, or working in the farrowing houses on the farm. 

ReasearchGate Profile


 

NANDI NIEMAND.jpg
Rencia Alberts
​Research Assistant
Email: renciaalberts11@gmail.com

Rencia assists with day to day laboratory tasks and aids with specimen processing and biobanking across multiple studies. Rencia is an avid painter, tea taster and a lover of ballet.

  

 

 

Desiree_Mbu.jpg
Desiree Mbu

Research Assistant 
Email: desireelm@sun.ac.za

Desiree assists with day to day laboratory tasks and is involved in specimen processing, biobanking and data capturing across multiple studies. Desiree's hobbies involve dancing and cooking. ​




Irene.jpg
Irene Mardarowicz

Research Assistant
Email: imardar@sun.ac.za

Irene assists with specimen processing, diagnostic testing and biobanking across multiple studies.




Clinical staff

   
Charlotte Lawn
Research Nurse
Email: clawn@sun.ac.za

Charlotte is based at Scottsdene TB clinic, where she recruits patients with suspected TB to evaluate the accuracy and impact of new TB tests. Charlotte is a keen orchid grower and loves gardening.

 


  


Charmaine van der Walt
Research Nurse
Email: charmainev@sun.ac.za  

Charmaine leads recruitment at Kraaifontein Community Health Centre, where she recruits patients into studies evaluating the impact of new diagnostics for TB and HIV. Charmaine loves to snorkel. 

 


 

R-wilson.jpg
Ruth Wilson
Research Nurse
Email: wilson@sun.ac.za

Ruth is based at Tygerberg General Hospital and collects specimens from patients with suspected extrapulmonary TB. Ruth loves instrumental music and often supports local artists.

 

 

   

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Jane Fortuin
Research nurse
Email: jcfortuin@sun.ac.za

Jane is a research nurse based at the Wallacedene clinic and recruits patients suspected with TB.

 

 

 

 

Linda_Makaluza.jpg
Linda Makaluza
Research Nurse
Email: lindam@sun.ac.za

Linda is based at Brooklyn Chest Hospital and assists in the study of new TB drugs such as Bedaquiline and Delamalid. Linda loves to take selfies!

 

 


 

A Sampson.jpg
Analeen Sampson

Research Nurse
Email: analeens@sun.ac.za

Analeen assists in a collaborative study between CLIME and Harvard Medical School which examines TB in healthcare workers. Analeen loves to make people smile

 

 

 

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Ashley Steyn

Research Field Worker
Email: ashleysteyn@sun.ac.za

Ashley assists Analeen in the field and is our CO2 monitoring expert

    

 


 


Fikiswa Seti
Community Health Worker
Email: fikiswa@sun.ac.za

Fikiswa helps source patients, consent them, conduct home visits in the Kraaifontein area, and performs several point-of-care tests at the clinic. Fikiswa loves walking.

 


 

Dandelene.jpg
Dandelene Sylvester
Community Health Worker
Email: dandelene@sun.ac.za

Danny helps source patients, consent them, and conduct home visits in the Scottsdene area. Danny loves dancing and socialising with family and friends.

 



 


Raymond Fredericks
Driver
Email: rpfredericks@sun.ac.za

Raymond is the group driver and all-round handyman, and plays an important role in the functioning of the recruitment sites.  Raymond loves table tennis and soccer.

 

 

Zintle_Ntwana.jpg
Zinthle Ntwana
Community health worker
Email: zntwana@sun.ac.za

Zinthle is based at the Wallacedene clinic and handles recruitment of patients and helps consent them.

 

 

 

 

Alumni

Natasha.png 

Natasha Kitchin
Technical officer

 

 

 

 

 

Caroline.jpg 

Caroline Vanherck
Intern

 

 

 

 

 

Nozuko Zukiswa
PhD student


 

 


 

Yolanda.jpg 

Yolanda Novokoza
Intern

 

 

 

 

 

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Roxanne Higgitt 
Research Assistant

 

 

 

 

 

 

Marina.jpg
Marina Ferreira

Study co-ordinator


 

   

 

 

 

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Chantell Meyer
Research Nurse