Dr Maria Ruperez
MD PhD DTMH
of Epidemiology in HIV/TB
I am a medical doctor and joined the LSHTM, for the first time, in 2010 as a student of the MSc in Tropical Medicine and International Health. I have worked for three years, both as a clinician and as researcher, in Mozambique, where I led and coordinated numerous studies and trials mainly focused on HIV and malaria. I completed my PhD at the University of Barcelona in 2016, which assessed the effect of maternal malaria and HIV on infant's health in sub-Saharan Africa. I have worked for the Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal) and, more recently, at the University of Cambridge, conducting various population-based studies in Africa. I joined LSHTM in 2018 as scientific coordinator of the TREATS project, which aims to measure the impact of an HIV/TB preventive intervention in the community on the burden of TB in Zambia and South Africa (https://treatsproject.org/) and leading several sub-studies on TB diagnostic tools. More recently, I have been working on operational research studies on implementation of TB and COVID-19 bidirectional screening in Zambia.
I have worked as Teaching Fellow in the Master of Public Health at the Imperial College and have lectured and supervised MSc's dissertations in the Master of Global Health from ISGlobal-University of Barcelona. Currently at LSHTM I am deputy organiser of the HIV Module, tutor of TMIH students and supervisor of MSc summer projects.
My research has been, mainly, focused on HIV/TB in sub-Saharan Africa. Since I joined LSHTM in 2018 I have been coordinating scientifically the TREATS study, a multi-site project aiming to understand the impact of a combined TB/HIV intervention on TB prevalence and incidence of infection in Zambia and South Africa. Within TREATS, we have been assessing how to best measure 'active' TB in the community and in TB prevalence surveys, and comparing Xpert-Ultra and culture outcomes in this context. I have been focusing, more particularly, in the use and performance of innovative screening tools for detecting TB in the community, such as CAD4TB and CRP. Besides TREATS, I have led several studies on performance of COVID-19 rapid test and of self-testing kits, and more recently, on implementation of TB and COVID-19 bidirectional screening at health facility and community level in Zambia