Dr Monde Muyoyeta is a VALIDATE Network Investigator and Director of TB Programmes at the Centre for Infectious Disease Research in Zambia (CIDRZ). In Monde's VALID8 interview, she discusses her work, the long and global history of TB and the challenge of constant grant applications.
Keep an eye out for more interviews from other members of our network on our VALID8 page.
1 - What do you do?
I am a clinical scientist and epidemiologist with a PhD in infectious Diseases epidemiology. I research on TB and HIV.
2 - What do you tell non-scientists you do?
I spend my time understanding how communicable diseases spread, what factors influence their spread, how these diseases can be prevented and controlled. I also spend my time understanding how we can improve diagnosis of these diseases and how we can improve access to the best diagnostic tools to hard to reach populations.
3 - What drew you to studying vaccines?
In the history mankind, communicable disease control has been achieved through vaccines. Tuberculosis has been around for millennia, after it was thought to have been controlled, it resurged in the 1980s and was declared a public health emergency in 1993. Today it remains the leading cause of death and morbidity from an infectious agent and most African countries are not on course to achieve control. An effective vaccine is urgently needed. Similarly, for HIV.
4 - Why is your work important and what could your work lead to?
My work is important because I work on two diseases that affect the some of the most vulnerable populations in our settings. My work generates and contributes to evidence on these diseases.
5 - What is the most interesting thing you have learned in your job?
To be a successful clinical scientist, you need to work on diseases of local relevance, you need to have networks and that the work impacts individuals directly.
6 - What is the best part of your job?
When I do clinical work and seeing patients. Analysing data and using data for decisions.
7 - What is the most challenging part of your job or research?
I don’t have protected funding, so I have to constantly write grants to keep doing the work we do and keep my experienced staff. This also takes away time from publishing.
8 - Why are vaccines important?
To achieve TB and HIV control, vaccines are needed urgently.
Find out more
You can find more about Monde's research on her VALIDATE biography page.
There are more fascinating interviews with members of our extensive network of researchers on our VALID8? page. This is an ongoing series, so check back regularly.
If you are a member and would like to take part, you can email your answers to the following questions along with a captioned picture of your day-to-day work to email@example.com.