Executive Committee Members
Alison Holmes, United Kingdom
Alison has a longstanding clinical and research career in global infectious diseases, with particular interests in antibiotic use, antimicrobial resistance (AMR), epidemiology and public health within healthcare and has served on the Executive Committee of the ISID, chairing the Education and the Publications Committee and introducing the Emerging Leaders initiative. She is a Professor of Infectious Diseases at Imperial College, a Fellow of the UK’s Academy of Medical Sciences and a National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) Senior Investigator.
She leads a large multidisciplinary research group and network, with strong international collaborations. She is Director of the NIHR Health Protection Research Unit in Healthcare Associated Infections (HCAI) and AMR and the Centre of Antimicrobial Optimisation at Imperial College. In the National Health Service, she is an Associate Medical Director leading a multi-professional service and a senior ID consultant. In addition to her work in infectious diseases, she has served as medical advisor to VSO, UK and has been involved in refugee health, and in health and human rights. She served as an expert member of the Governmental Advisory Committee on AMR and HCAI for nine years and she now chairs the Technical Advisory Group for the Fleming Fund. She sits on a variety of WHO expert groups and committees and sits on or chairs numerous national and international scientific advisory boards, funding panels and editorial boards.
Alison spent much of her life overseas. She attended Cambridge University as an undergraduate and then went to St George’s Medical school London. She worked in communicable diseases and tropical medicine in Oxford, gained her DTM&H from London, and was awarded an ID fellowship to spend at Boston University, where her research was conducted in the Maxwell Finland Laboratories and where she gained an MPH in International Health from Harvard School of Public Health.
Marc Mendelson, South Africa
Marc Mendelson studied medicine at St. Mary’s Hospital, London and specialized in infectious diseases at Addenbrookes Hospital, Cambridge, where he attained his PhD in cytomegalovirus latency. Marc undertook post-doctoral studies at The Rockefeller University, New York, working on the interaction between Mycobacterium tuberculosis and dendritic cells, before transferring his research to Cape Town. He is now Professor of Infectious Diseases and head of the Division of Infectious Diseases & HIV Medicine at Groote Schuur Hospital, University of Cape Town, and director of the Cape Town GeoSentinel Travel Surveillance Network Site.
His main field of interest lies in national and international policy relating to antimicrobial resistance (AMR). He is the chair of the South African Ministerial Advisory Committee on AMR; South African lead for the Global Health Security Agenda Prevent-1 AMR Working Group; director of the South African National Antibiotic Stewardship Training Centre, and a member of the scientific advisory committee of the Global Antibiotic Research & Development Programme (GARDP). Marc is also a technical advisor to WHO on a variety of AMR-related projects.
Professor Mendelson is the chair of the Policy and Advisory Committee and serves on the Finance Committee.
Paul Tambyah, Singapore
Paul Anantharajah Tambyah is currently Professor of Medicine at the National University of Singapore and Senior Consultant Infectious Diseases Physician at the National University Hospital. He is also Research Director in the Division of Infectious Diseases of the National University Health System. After graduating from the National University of Singapore, he did his postgraduate training at the University of Wisconsin under Dr. Dennis Maki and since returning to Singapore in 1999 he has held a number of academic, professional and advisory appointments including Assistant Dean of the Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine. He is immediate past president of the Society of Infectious Diseases (Singapore) and Secretary-General of the Asia Pacific Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infection.
Sally Roberts, New Zealand
Dr. Sally Roberts is a graduate of the University of Auckland, School of Medicine. She is a clinical microbiologist and infectious diseases physician at Auckland City Hospital and is the Clinical Head of Microbiology at LabPlus, Auckland District Health Board. Since August 2011, she has been the National Clinical Lead for the New Zealand Health Quality & Safety Commission Infection Prevention and Control Program. She has been on a number of New Zealand’s Ministry of Health working groups.
Her main interests include the diagnosis of infectious diseases; prevention of healthcare-associated infections; and antimicrobial resistance.
Robert Heyderman, United Kingdom
Rob Heyderman is a clinician scientist with skills and experience that bridge clinical practice, disease prevention and the fundamental understanding of the mechanisms of infectious disease. He directed the highly successful Malawi-Liverpool-Wellcome Trust Programme for over 8 years, transforming the Programme into a centre of excellence led by Malawian & international scientists, pursuing internationally-leading science, research training & improving the health of people in sub-Saharan Africa.
Rob established a Mucosal Pathogens Research Group at the UCL, which pursues epidemiological, clinical and basic laboratory research in UK and Africa to address the microbial and immunological basis of severe infection caused by mucosal pathogens and their prevention through vaccination; the regulation of inflammation; and the diagnosis & management of meningitis and sepsis. He has recently launched the NIHR Global Health Research Unit on Mucosal Pathogens (MPRU), which is an interdisciplinary translational programme that brings together internationally recognised UK and African investigators to tackle limitations in the long-term effectiveness of existing vaccines to prevent meningitis, pneumonia and sepsis though new approaches to interrupting mucosal pathogen carriage/transmission.
Gagandeep Kang, India
Professor Gagandeep Kang is a physician scientist who for many years was a Professor of Microbiology and Head of the Division of Gastrointestinal Sciences and the Wellcome Trust Research Laboratory at the Christian Medical College (CMC), Vellore. Focusing on vaccines, enteric infections and nutrition in young children, she combines field epidemiology with intensive laboratory investigations to develop data, insight and tools that have advanced both the science of infectious diseases and policy in India.
Professor Kang’s groundbreaking work has been recognized with numerous awards and honors. These include Woman Bioscientist of the Year from the Government of India (2006); several national awards and the Infosys Prize for Life Sciences (2016). In addition to her pioneering research in low resource settings, she contributes to the biomedical sciences through serving on numerous national and international editorial boards, research grant review boards, and scientific advisory committees. Recently Prof. Kang was appointed Executive Director of the Translational Health Service and Technology Institute (THSTI), an autonomous institute of the Department of Biotechnology, Government of India.
She holds MBBS, MD and PhD degrees from CMC and a Fellowship of the Royal College of Pathologists, London. She has also been elected to the Fellowship of the American Academy of Microbiology (2010), the Indian Academy of Sciences (2011), National Academy of Sciences (2013), the Faculty of Public Health in the UK (2016), and the Indian National Science Academy (2016).
Neelika Malavige, Sri Lanka
Professor Neelika Malavige graduated from the Faculty of Medicine, University of Colombo, and carried out her doctoral studies at the MRC Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine, University of Oxford, which was funded through a Commonwealth Scholarship. She returned to Sri Lanka to take up an academic position at the University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Sri Lanka in 2008 and has been affiliated to University of Oxford as an academic visitor since then. She was elected as the Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians in London in 2015 and the Royal College of Pathologists in 2015.
Neelika has done extensive research related to dengue, particularly focusing on factors that lead to severe dengue, identification of biomarkers and mediators of vascular leak in dengue. Her group has identified several mediators that cause vascular leak and she has headed several clinical trials to determine efficacy of treatment for dengue. She has been the Director of the Centre for Dengue Research at the University of Sri Jayewardenepura since 2012 and has published extensively on dengue, for which she has won many awards.
Miguel O'Ryan, Chile
Miguel O’Ryan is Full Professor at the Microbiology and Mycology Program at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Chile where he currently holds the position of Director for International Affairs. He was Vice President for Research and Development of the University of Chile until August 2012; Director for Research and Development of the Faculty of Medicine until July 2014; and previously Director of the Microbiology and Mycology Program. Dr. O’Ryan qualified at the Catholic University of Chile and studied pediatric infectious diseases at the University of Texas Health Sciences Center, Houston, Texas. He served as the president of the Chilean Infectious Disease Society from 1998–1999. His research has focused on three main areas.
• Molecular and clinical aspects of enteric disease (mainly rotavirus, norovirus and more recently Helicobacter pylori)
• New pediatric vaccines
• Infection in the immune compromised host
He was the principle investigator for the multinational trial of the human rotavirus vaccine (NEJM January 2006). Dr. O’Ryan’s research, expert reviews, and editorials have been widely published in 106 indexed articles. He has co-authored 19 book chapters on topics that include enteric viruses; parasitic diseases in children; and medications used in pediatrics. Dr. O’Ryan is an active member of the World Society for Pediatric Infectious Diseases (WSPID); Pediatric Infectious Disease Society of America (PIDS); the Sociedad Chilena de Infectologia; the Sociedad Latinoamericana de Infectologia Pediatrica (SLIPE); and is currently a member of ISID’s executive committee. He is currently or has been an editor of the Journal of Pediatrics; the Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal; the British Medical Journal; and in 2002 chaired the III World Congress of Pediatric Infectious Diseases. Dr. O’Ryan was elected member of the Chilean National Academy of Medicine in 2012.
Dr. O’Ryan is the chair of the External Affairs Committee.
Zamberi Sekawi, Malaysia
Professor Sekawi’s previous appointments include Deputy Dean, Head of Department, Technical Officer for the World Health Organization (based in Fiji) and Visiting Scientist at the Burnet Institute in Melbourne, Australia. He is recognized by his peers as an expert in his field with his appointments as internal and external examiners at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels and has been an invited speaker at many seminars and conferences. He is actively involved in research, has secured several research grants, has extensive publications and has won numerous research awards. His main research is on multi-resistant bacteria and virology (particularly hepatitis and respiratory viruses). He also supervises many postgraduate students. He was involved as a WHO Consultant on several occasions to the Solomon Islands, Cambodia and Papua New Guinea to assist on laboratory strengthening. He is actively involved in professional bodies, he had organized several national and international conferences.
Ursula Theuretzbacher, Austria
Ursula Theuretzbacher is a microbiologist and an expert on antibacterial drug research and development strategies and the use of antibiotics based on public health needs. She served as president of the International Society for Anti-Infective Pharmacology; founding president of the European Society for Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (ESCMID) PK/PD of Anti-Infectives Study Group; is an executive committee member of the International Society for Infectious Diseases; and chairs a working group of the International Society of Chemotherapy. Ursula was a member of the group who coordinated WHO’s Priority Pathogen List for research and development and lead scientist for WHO’s Clinical Pipeline analysis. She lectured at the University of Vienna for 10 years and was recently appointed ESCMID Fellow.
Her research has focused in three main areas.
• Public funding approaches for antibacterial research and development
• Initiatives to recover the global pipeline
• Strategies to improve the use of antibiotics