​​​​​​​​​​​​Department of Psychiatry


Research staff​

Olivia Matshabane.jpg

Dr. Olivia Matshabane  


BA, BA (Hons), MA, PhD

Dr Olivia Matshabane is a research psychologist and neuroethics researcher. Her work focuses on the ethical, legal, social, and cultural implications of neuropsychiatric genomics and the neuroethical implications of new and emerging neurotechnologies. She is the Principal Investigator on an African Academy of Sciences and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation seed grant focussed on neuroethics in Africa. She earned her PhD in Medicine from the University of Cape Town (UCT), her Master’s and Honours degrees in Psychology from Stellenbosch University (SU), and her Bachelors in Psychology from the University of the Western Cape (UWC), South Africa. Before joining the SAMRC Genomics of Brain Disorders Unit in the Department of Psychiatry at SU, she completed a two-year Postdoctoral Fellowship at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the United States, where her work used social network analysis to investigate family communication patterns and stigma among families affected by a genomics-related neuropsychiatric disorder. Dr Matshabane is a member of the Psychiatric Genomics Consortium (PGC) Africa Working Group leadership committee. She is also the South Africa representative in the African Brain Data Network (ABDN) and the International Neuroethics Society (INS) representative to the International Brain Research Organization (IBRO). She is a member of the International Brain Initiative's (IBI) Cross-Cultural Neuroscience Working Group and she is also one of the 24 international expert scientists tasked to develop a recommendation on ethics of neurotechnology by UNESCO. Dr Matshabane also supervises postgraduate students in the Department.​​

Muneeb Salie.jpegDr. Muneeb Salie  
Science Writer and Project Co-ordinator

BSc, BSc (Hons), MSc, PhD
Tel: 021 938 9454

Dr Salie received his PhD in Human Genetics in 2014 from the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Stellenbosch University. For his PhD he studied the genetic aetiology predisposing specific South African population groups to developing TB disease. His work highlighted the importance of host-pathogen interaction studies to fully understand the geo-specific disease burden of TB. In 2016 he took up a Postdoctoral Research Fellow position at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, USA, in the Department of Developmental Neurobiology. There he used stem cells models to understand the epigenetic regulation of both normal and diseased human brain development. Dr. Salie has been successful in obtaining both national (NRF and MRC) and international (EMBO and Fogarty International Center) grants, has several papers published in internationally recognized journals and has mentored and supervised both under- and postgraduate students in research design and writing.