Stellenbosch University Immunology Research Group
Dr Nelita du Plessis
Tel: +27 21 938 9953
Dr Nelita du Plessis is a senior scientist at Stellenbosch University Immunology Research Group. She completed her undergraduate studies and obtained Hons B.Sc (Molecular Genetics) and M.Sc (Human Genetics) degrees from the University of Stellenbosch. She completed her PhD in Biomedical Sciences in 2012, focusing on the immunological effect of helminth infestations on the innate and adaptive host responses to Mtb in a mouse model.
Her current research builds on her Post-doctoral findings on innate immunity in TB, particularly around the role of regulatory myeloid cells (RMC), such as myeloid derived suppressor cells (MDSC), in Mtb control. This includes in vitro and in vivo investigations of immunosuppressive mechanisms and identification of RMC molecules/pathways as potential targets for host-directed-immunotherapy in TB. Dr. du Plessis is an NRF rated scientist and has recently been awarded a 2 year EDCTP Career Development Fellowship for investigating the functional effect of small-molecule targets on MDSC function and phenotype in TB.