Protozoan parasites cause many of the world’s worst diseases and are amongst the greatest sources of suffering and death. Because most are restricted to the developing world, researching the biology of these organisms with a view to deriving effective drugs, vaccines and diagnostics has been long neglected. My research has been focussed on this group of organisms for many years and my group’s research investigates the interactions between these organisms and their human host, and whether by elucidating and disrupting these interactions we can provide novel therapies.
In the fight against disease, I believe it is important that tomorrow’s doctors are able to incorporate understanding and indeed practice of biomedical research into their treatment of disease; to understand the importance of the evidence base for the practice of modern medicine. For this reason at UEA I have worked to introduce a research project into the MBBS syllabus and an intercalated MRes course for those medical students wishing to pursue research actively during their medical careers. I hope to be able to offer an intercalated PhD course to medical students in the future.