Prof Papathanasopoulos is a project investigator at the University of the Witwatersrand, responsible for co-ordinating and overseeing all activities associated with the implementation of tuberculosis strain sequencing and genotyping, and related training at the South African site.
Maria obtained her PhD in Microbiology from the University of the Witwatersrand in 1998, and has received additional research training in France, UK and USA. She joined the Department of Molecular Medicine and Haematology in 2004, and is currently the Director of the HIV Pathogenesis Research Unit (HPRU) and coDirector of the Genotyping laboratory. The HPRU conducts basic and translational research to increase the knowledge base of HIV-1 subtype C pathogenesis that can be translated into novel drug discovery and vaccine design. The Genotyping laboratory is an accredited facility that conducts basic scientific research and performs HIV drug resistance genotyping tests for patients on antiretroviral therapy in the public sector, as well as for clinical trials (eg ACTG, HPTN, IAVI). The laboratory is also an NHLS genotyping reference laboratory and has WHO regional certification.
In addition to lecturing undergraduate medical students, Maria supervises postgraduate students, and has published more than 62 peer reviewed scientific articles and book chapters. Maria has extensive expertise in HIV-1 sequencing and drug resistance genotyping, and these skills will be extrapolated to TB genotyping.