Dr Selorm Avumegah

Research Assistant

School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences
Faculty of Science

Affiliate Research Officer

Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology
s.avumegah@uq.edu.au
+61 7 344 32597

Overview

I hold a Bachelors (Hons) degree in Biological Sciences from KNUST, Ghana (2011); and Master’s degree in Biology from Aarhus University, Denmark (2014). I completed my Doctoral degree in 2018 from Deakin University Australia.

I recently joined School of Chemistry and Molecular Bioscience as a Senior Research Associate, working on developing a rapid vaccine pipeline for viral epidemics. I am also an Affiliated Research Academic at Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology.

I am passionate about research that focuses on infectious diseases. Over the past few years, I have been working on one of the neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) known as Buruli ulcer (BU). The disease which is also known as Bairnsdale/Daintree ulcer is caused by Mycobacterium ulcerans, and has been reported in West Africa and Australia (Victoria and Queensland). BU is a debilitating necrotic subcutaneous disease and usually affects the limbs. Left untreated, it could lead to contracture deformity and amputation. The exact mode of transmission is unclear. My PhD which was conducted in Geelong (an endemic region) in Victoria, sought to develop a serology-based tool for M. ulcerans infection.

I am a self-motivated individual. My university training has equipped me with highly relevant skills in many research areas in Life Sciences. I am keen on collaborating with researchers and industry partners on the development of vaccines, cell-mediated and serology-based screening methods for infectious diseases, especially those in mycobacteria.

Research Impacts

As an early career researcher (PhD awarded in 2019), my transformative research in infectious diseases has gained lots of media attention; Researchers a step closer to developing a better screening test for Bairnsdale ulcer, Researcher helps identify flesh-eating ulcer risk and Barwon Health and Deakin University Research Week focuses on collaboration and innovation. In March 2019, I was invited to present my research entitled “Initial serological screening test for Mycobacterium ulcerans exposure in Victoria, Australia” at World Health Organization Meeting on Buruli ulcer and other skin NTDs in Geneva, Switzerland. I have tutored undergraduate students in Africa and Australia in Microbiology, Molecular biology, Molecular basis of disease, Infectious disease and other immunity courses. I have also mentored PhD students in their project work.

Qualifications

  • Bachelor of Science (Biological) with Honours, Kwame Nkrumah University
  • Master of Science in Biology, Aarhus University
  • Doctor of Philosophy, Deakin University