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Prof. Hulda Shaidi Swai

  1. Introduction
  2. Publications
  3. Previous and Current posts

Google Scholar profile

Prof. Hulda Shaidi Swai holds a PhD in Biomaterials, from Queen Mary’s College, University of London, UK. where she also worked for 9 years as a Researcher.

She has recently joined The Nelson Mandela African Institution of Science and Technology (NM-AIST) as a Professor in School of Life Science and Bio-engineering. After joining NM-AIST in July 2016 she was tasked to lead her group in applying for African Center of excellence funded by the World Bank (ACEII) call. After stiff competition, NM-AIST was awarded to host two African Center of Excellence in December 2016 and she is the Center Leader of one of them.

Prior to that she was senior Principal Researcher at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), in South Africa, where she led the Encapsulation and Delivery Research Group. She has a proven ability to independently formulate and execute research projects and implement scientific research programmes, both in public and private sectors.

In 2013 Prof Swai was appointed as an Extra ordinary Professor in University of Pretoria.

Prof. Swai instituted and headed up the Department of Science and Technology-(DST)/CSIR Pan-African Centre of Excellence in Applied Nanomedicine Research and Training, with a focus on infectious diseases of poverty. Research activities at the Centre aim to improve current therapeutic agents used in the treatment diseases like Tubercuolosis (TB) and Malaria. The platform comprises a multidisciplinary mix of 26 passionate researchers, most of whom she has supervised and/or mentored over the years.

Prof. Swai established several research collaborations, through which over 24 international research and training exchange programs, each lasting about 3 to 12 months were realized. In the last three years (in CSIR), she secured over R 60 million (about US $ 7 million) in research and training grants.

Prof. Swai’s research on nanomedicine to improve current TB and Malaria drugs is currently undergoing preclinical development. The Malaria project has just been awarded R 110,000,000 equivalent (6,000,000 USD) by the World Health Organisation as a demonstrative project to prove the potential of Nanomedicine in PRD. This outcome is opening doors to more avenues for research on other neglected diseases and HIV

Given the great potential nanomedicine has to revolutionise disease diagnosis and treatment, and having pioneered nanomedicine research in infectious disease drug development in Africa, Prof. Swai is avid about growing human capacity and infrastructure in the continent. As such, she successfully organised several scientific meetings such as workshops and training courses. In March 2011, Prof. Swai also held the first international nanomedicine workshop for diseases of poverty, in South Africa. Officially launched by the former Minister of Science and Technology (Ms Naledi Pandor), the meeting was attended by over 90 delegates representing 24 different countries around the globe. This first meeting resulted in a series of nanomedicine sensitisation seminars across Africa, reaching about 6,000 researchers at 33 research institutes and universities.

In Nov 2012, Prof. Swai held the first Pan-African Summer School in Nanomedicine in South Africa, where over 100 young researchers completed theoretical training, with lab exposure, encompassing all the concepts of nanomedicine (from lab – clinic). The instructors were world class nanomedicine and infectious disease experts from across the globe.

In August 2015, Prof. Swai was among the 3 leading scientist in the world involved in reviewing the MSC in Nanosceince program in South Africa

Prof. Swai was also one of the leading scientist in developing the Master’s degree in Nanoscience curriculum/program in South Africa. The only MSc in nanoscience in the continent, she is now developing the same in NM-AIST for Eastern and Southern Africa through the World Bank funding.

Prof. Swai’s efforts have been recognised through numerous achievement awards and prizes like the CSIR President’s award, mentorship awards, career achievement awards, science and technology awards, etc. Prof. Swai is also well published and is an accomplished international speaker; amongst others, she has secured audience and presented her work to the former President of South Africa (Mr Thabo Mbeki), several high ranking government officials like the Ministers of Health and also minister of Science and Technology, the South Africa parliament. She has appeared on several magazine and newspaper covers, TV and radio shows in the continent.

Prof. Swai also serves on several international expert committees, such as the EDCTP, TB Global Alliance, ISHReCA, UNECA, Erasmus Mundus Nanofar and the Editorial Board of the Journal of Nanomedicine, etc.

Academic qualifications

  • Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) 1998 - 2000. Queen Mary and Westfield College- London University, UK
  • MSc in Technology and development 1984-1985 in Chemical Engineer-Imperial College of Science and Technology- University of London -UK.
  • BSc in Chemistry and Statistics 1977 - 1980. University of Dar es Salaam,.

Current positions

  • Teaching and Research Professor
  • Director of ACEII founded by the World Bank
  • Extraordinary Professor University of Pretoria South Africa Joint projects and supervision

Employment history

  • Associate Professor Department of Life Science and Bioengineering, Tanzania, since July 2015 to date.
  • CSIR Materials Science and Manufacturing, Pretoria, South Africa April 2001 July 2014
  • Yolandy Lemmer a, Lonji Kalombo a , Ray-Dean Pietersen b , Arwyn T. Jones c , Boitumelo Semete-Makokotlela a , Sandra Van Wyngaardt d , Bathabile Ramalapa a , Anton C. Stoltz e , Bienyameen Baker b , Jan A. Verschoor d , Hulda S. Swai, Chantal de Chastellier f. Mycolic acids, a promising mycobacterial ligand for targeting of nanoencapsulated drugs in tuberculosis. Journal of Controlled Release 211 (2015) 94-104
  • Paula Melariri, Lonji Kalombo and Hulda Swai. Oral lipid based nanoformulation of Tefenoquine enhanced bioavailability and blood stage antimalaria efficancy. Dove Press journal 20th Feb 2015
  • Nichrous Mlalila, Charles Mahika, Lonji Kalombo, Hulda Swai, Askwar Hilonga - Human food safety and environmental hazards associated with the use of methyltestosterone and other steroids in production of all-male tilapia, Volume 22, Issue 7, pp 4922-4931; (2015) Environmental Science and Pollution Research: download at http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11356-015-4133-3.
  • Matshawandile T, Hayeshi R, Swai H and Dube A. Curdlan-conjugate PLGA nanoparticles possess macrophage stimulant activity and drug delivery capabilities. Spring science and business media NY Feb 2015
  • Rose Hayeshi, Boitumelo Semete, Lonji Kalombo, Yolandy Lemmer, Lebogang Katata and Hulda Swai. Progress and Potential of Nanomedicine to Address Infectious Diseases of Poverty. In Nanomedical Device and Systems Design: Challenges, Possibilities, Visions, Frank Boehm Ed. 2014. CRC Press, Taylor and Francis Group, Florida.
  • Tshweu L, Katata L, Kalombo L, Chiappetta DA, Hocht C, Sosnik A, Swai H. Enhanced oral bioavailability of the antiretroviral efavirenz encapsulated in poly(epsilon-caprolactone) nanoparticles by a spray-drying method. 2013. Nanomed. Dec 23. Epub ahead of print (doi:10.2217/nnm.13.167)..
  • Dube A, Lemmer Y, Hayeshi R, Balogun M, Labuschagne P, Swai H, Kalombo. State of the art and future directions in nanomedicine for tuberculosis. 2013. Expert Opin Drug Deliv 10(12):1725-34.
  • Booysen LL, Kalombo L, Brooks E, Hansen R, Gilliland J, Gruppo V, Lungenhofer P, Semete-Makokotlela B, Swai HS, Kotze AF, Lenaerts A, du Plessis LH. 2013. In vivo/in vitro pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic study of spray-dried poly-(dl-lactic-co-glycolic) acid nanoparticles encapsulating rifampicin and isoniazid. Int J Pharm.444(1-2):10-7.
    • C A Obera, L Kalombo, H Swai, R B Gupta. 2012. Preparation of rifampicin/lactose microparticle composites by a supercritical antisolvent-drug excipient mixing technique for inhalation delivery. Powder Technol. 236:132-38.
    • Nkabinde LA, Shoba-Zikhali LN, Semete-Makokotlela B, Kalombo L, Swai HS, Hayeshi R, Naicker B, Hillie TK, Permeation of PLGA nanoparticles across different in vitro models. Hamman JH. Curr Drug Deliv. ;9(6):617-27
    • Tshweu, L, Kalombo, L, Swai, H, Katata, L. 2013. Nanoencapsulation of water soluble drug, lamivudine using a double emulsion spray drying technique for improving HIV treatment. Journal of Nanoparticle Research 15:2040.
    • Katata, L, Tshweu, L, Naidoo, S, Kalombo, L, Swai, H. 2012. Design and formulation of nano-sized spray dried Efavirenz-Part I: Influence of formulation parameters. Journal of Nanoparticle Research. 14:1247
    • R Hayeshi, B Semete, L Kalombo, L Katata, Y Lemmer, P Melariri, B Nyamboli and H Swai (2012). Nanomedicine in the development of drugs for poverty related diseases (K Chibale, M Davies-Coleman & C Masimirembwa, Eds.). In Drug Discovery for Africa (pp 407-429). Berlin Heidelberg: Springer
    • Potential of improving the treatment of Tuberculosis through Nanomedicine. Semete B, Kalombo L, Katata L, Chelule P, Booysen L, Lemmer Y, Naidoo S, Ramalapa B, Hayeshi R, Swai H S. Mol Cryst Liq Cryst. 2012, 556(1): 317-330.
    • Effects of protein binding on the biodistribution of PEGylated PLGA nanoparticles post oral administration. Semete B, Booysen L, Kalombo L, Ramalapa B, Hayeshi R, Swai H S. Int J Pharm. 2012, 424(1-2):115-20.
    • Semete, B., Kalombo, L., Katata, L. and Swai, H S. 2010. Nano-drug delivery systems: Advances in TB, HIV and Malaria treatment, in Smart Bio Smart Biomol. Medicine, 2010. Edited by Ajay K. Mishra, Ashutosh Tiwari, and Shivani B. Mishra
    • Lemmer, Y., Semete, B., Booysen, L., Kalombo, L., Katata, L., Jones, A.T., Alexander, C., Khati, M., Swai, H.S., Verschoor, J.A. 2010. Targeted nanodrug delivery systems for the treatment of tuberculosis. Drug Discovery Today 15(23-24):1098.
    • Semete, B., Booysen, L.I.J., Kalombo L., Venter, J.D., Katata, L., Ramalapa, B., Verschoor, J.A., Swai, H.S. 2010 In vivo uptake and acute immune response to orally administered chitosan and PEG coated PLGA nanoparticles. Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology 249(2):158-165.
    • Semete, B., Booysen, L., Lemmer, Y., Kalombo, L., Katata, L., Verschoor, J., Swai, H.S. 2010. In vivo evaluation of the biodistribution and safety of PLGA nanoparticles as drug delivery systems. Nanomedicine: Nanotechnology, Biology and Medicine 6(5):662-671. Lemmer, Y., Thanyani, S.T., Vrey, P.J., Driver, C.H.S., Venter, L., van Wyngaardt, S., ten Bokum, A.M.C., Ozoemena, K.I., Pilcher, L.A., Fernig, D.G., Stoltz, A.C., Swai, H.S., Verschoor, J.A. (2009). "Detection of Antimycolic Acid Antibodies by Liposomal Biosensors." Methods Enzymol 464: 80-102.
    • Swai H, Semete B and Kalombo L. Chelule PK, Sievers, R, Kisich K. Nanotechnology in the treatment of respiratory diseases. Journal of Nanomedicine (2008).
    • Swai H, Chelule PK, Semete B and Kalombo L. Nanotechnology in Drug Delivery for Malaria and TB Treatment. A book chapter In: Bionanotechnology: Global Prospects. Reisner DE (Ed), Taylor and Francis Publishers, Boca Raton 2008.

1. Head: Pan-African Centre of Excellence in Nanomedicine Research

2. Research Group Leader: Encapsulation and Delivery Research Group

3. Senior Principal Research Scientist

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