Robert Ntozini

Doctor of Public Health Candidate (DrPH), Walden University, USA. 

Research focus: Investigating the effects of water access on child growth – with emphasis on the effects of distance to water drinking and non-drinking water, time-, and quality and quantity of water used by households on child stunting by 18 months. Expected defense first quarter 2020  

Mutsa Bwakura Dangarembizi

 PhD, Wits University, RSA 

Research focus: Investigating the 1-year clinical and nutritional outcomes of children (1-59months) discharged from hospital following management of severe acute malnutrition  


Dr. Ceri Evans

A paediatrician and clinician scientist from Queen Mary University of London. He has a research interest in HIV-exposed uninfected children, and has grants from the Wellcome Trust and the International AIDS Society to use epidemiological and laboratory approaches to investigate the health disparities between children born to mothers with and without HIV. Dr Evans requires renewal of his research permit and  temporary employment permit. 

Dr Jonathan Sturgeon

From Queen Mary University of London and is supporting the TAME study. He brings unique expertise in laboratory methodology to evaluate the intestine and markers of inflammation in children with severe acute malnutrition. He will be working with the laboratory team at Zvitambo to set up new assays that can be conducted in Zimbabwe.   He requires his research permit and temporary employment permit renewed annually. 

Dr Joseph Piper

A paediatrician and Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Fellow. He is designing and coordinating the follow-up of children aged 7 years who were previously in the SHINE trial (with Prof Prendergast as PI). This will measure the child’s growth, physical and cognitive function in a holistic manner, in combination with a detailed caregiver questionnaire. Dr Piper requires his research permit and temporary employment permit renewed annually. 

Dr Nadia Koyratty

A trainee student with University at Buffalo under the mentorship of Dr Laura Smith (see above).  Her research focuses on the effects of food and water insecurity on child growth and on the ability of families to uptake nutrition interventions.  She requires her research to be renewed. 

Dr. Ruairi Robertson

A Postdoctoral Research Fellow affiliated with Queen Mary University of London and University of British Columbia. He is funded by the Wellcome Trust under a Sir Henry Wellcome Postdoctoral Fellowship. Dr. Robertson has been conducting research with Zvitambo since 2017. His research focusses on the gut microbiome and how both pathogenic and commensal microbial communities within the intestine influence child growth in the context of both chronic and acute malnutrition. His fellowship is based within the HOPE-SAM study of children admitted to hospital with severe acute malnutrition. Dr. Robertson has led the microbiome analysis for the HOPE-SAM study and for sub-studies with the SHINE study, contributing to design of study protocols for sample collection, storage, data collection and analysis. Dr. Robertson was a faculty member on the Harare Sequencing Symposium held between Zvitambo, BRTI and University of Zimbabwe in 2018 which aimed to engage the scientific community in Zimbabwe on next-generation sequencing technologies and build expertise and skills within the country. As part of these efforts, Dr. Robertson will assist with training laboratory Zvitambo staff on stool DNA extraction for the CHAIN study in order to build further laboratory capacity within Zvitambo. Dr. Robertson has actively contributed to grant and paper writing within Zvitambo and with collaborators including acting as a co-PI on the successfully funded BBSRC-Global Challenges Research Fund to support the CHAIN trial (started in 2019) in addition to small grants from QMUL to support the HOPE-SAM and SHINE trials. Dr. Robertson has presented at and been engaged with the local Harare Research Club in order to support research collaboration in Harare. He continues to participate in grant writing for large research studies within Zvitambo in order to further develop expertise and skill in the gut microbiome within Zimbabwe.  Hrequires his research permit to be renewed. 

Dr. Claire Bourke

A Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Immunology affiliated with Queen Mary University of London, and is funded by Wellcome Trust and The Royal Society, UK. She has been based full-time at Zvitambo since 2018. Her research focuses on how immune cell function contributes to clinical outcomes of HIV, bilharzia and malnutrition. Her fellowship is based within the HOPE-SAM study of children admitted to hospital with severe acute malnutrition. Through her research, she has developed novel tissue culture assays of innate immune cell anti-bacterial functions and established cellular analysis via flow cytometry for the first time at Zvitambo; she has trained Zvitambo laboratory staff and students in these methods. She also contributes actively to grant and paper writing at Zvitambo, contributing to publications from SHINE, successful grant bids to BBSRC-Global Challenges Research Fund to support the CHAIN trial (started in 2019), small grants from QMUL to support the HOPE-SAM trial, and travel awards to support visits to Zvitambo by researchers from the University of Zambia, Queen Mary University of London and the University of Cambridge. In July 2020 she will co-host an immunology training workshop for Harare-based researchers together with Zvitambo colleagues and is an active contributor to the local Harare Research Club for developing biomedical researchers and to science outreach activities for non-scientists.  She requires her research and immigration permit and temporary employment permit renewed annually.

Dr Christie Noble

A trainee paediatrician from the UK and has an academic clinical fellowship with Queen Mary University of London. She is supervised by Prof Prendergast. She is working with samples from the SHINE trial and using flow cytometry to examine the immune function of infants in the Environmental Enteric Dysfunctional substudy, with particular interest in longitudinal changes over time, effects of trial arm, and the impact of stunting. She requires her research permit to be renewed. 

Dr James Church

is a past student from Queen Mary University of London and worked on data from the SHINE trial. He has now completed his PhD studies and no longer requires research and immigration permits.