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African Academy of Sciences elects LSHTM Professor Martin Antonio as a fellow

Martin Antonio, Professor of Molecular Microbiology and Global Health at MRC Unit The Gambia at LSHTM, has been elected to the prestigious African Academy of Sciences (AAS) Fellowship.
Professor Martin Antonio

Prof Antonio is one of 39 Fellows announced by the AAS for the 2019 election year. Fellows are recognised for attaining the highest level of excellence in their scientific field and for making significant contributions to the advancement of science regionally and globally.

AAS Fellows are elected for life through a rigorous peer review process on the basis of excellence in their publications record, innovations, leadership roles and contribution to policy and society.

Originally from Ghana, Prof Antonio trained in molecular microbiology in the UK and set up the MRC Unit The Gambia’s molecular microbiology research group in 2005. Since then, Martin has been instrumental in establishing the molecular capabilities at The Unit.

Prof Antonio’s research focuses on the leverage of new molecular technologies in diagnosis of tropical infections, investigation of microbial transmission and clinical trials. He has published more than 200 peer-reviewed scientific publications and supervised eleven PhD students in UK and African universities.

He is currently advising on the COVID-19 ‘rapid support team’ in The Gambia and working with the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization to support the pandemic response across the continent. 

Prof Antonio said: “It is a great honour to be elected to the African Academy of Sciences and to join the ranks of eminent African scientists especially as we bring our thoughts together to fight COVID-19 in both the continent and globally. I would like to acknowledge the great support from my Research team at The MRC Unit The Gambia at the LSHTM, the LSHTM and the long-term support from the Medical Research Council (UK). Finally, I would like to thank my wife, Joyce and my son, Nene Agudey for allowing me to do the job that I love!”.

Prof Antonio is also Director of the WHO Collaborating Centre for New Vaccines Surveillance, a member of the MRC Unit’s Senior Strategic Leadership Board and Chairs the West Africa Strategy and partnership, as well as serving on numerous other scientific advisory boards and committees in both Africa and the UK.

Professor Peter Piot, Director of LSHTM, said: “Many congratulations to Martin. His contribution to medical research and resolute leadership, particularly during the current pandemic, means this recognition is thoroughly deserved. We are proud to have him as a colleague."

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