In a world plagued by HIV/AIDS, South Africa’s own Professor Quarraisha Abdool Karim has emerged as a leading voice in the fight against the pandemic.
Not only has she dedicated her career to researching the disease and its impact on her home country, she has also broken barriers in the scientific community by becoming the first woman to head the World Academy of Sciences (TWAS) for the advancement of science in developing countries.
As an unequalled researcher, Professor Abdool Karim has made significant contributions to our understanding of HIV/AIDS in South Africa. She has conducted multiple studies on the epidemiology of HIV in the country, including the pivotal CAPRISA 004 trial which found that a vaginal gel containing the antiretroviral drug tenofovir can reduce the risk of HIV infection in women by 39%. This groundbreaking discovery has since been implemented in HIV prevention programs around the world and has been hailed as a major step forward in the fight against the disease.
But Professor Abdool Karim’s contributions go beyond her research. As the first woman to head TWAS, she is also breaking barriers in the scientific community.
TWAS is a highly respected organisation that works to promote science and technology in developing countries, and the fact that a woman from a developing country has been elected to lead it is a significant achievement.
This is particularly noteworthy in light of the fact that women are underrepresented in the sciences, both in South Africa and around the world.
The fact that Professor Abdool Karim has achieved so much in the face of such formidable obstacles is a testament to her intelligence, dedication, and perseverance. She is an inspiration to women everywhere, and her work is making a real difference in the fight against HIV/AIDS.
Not only is she a leading researcher but also a leader in the society, breaking barriers and paving the way for future generations of girls and women in science.
In conclusion, Professor Quarraisha Abdool Karim is a shining example of what can be achieved when we work together to overcome the challenges of HIV/AIDS.
Her research and leadership in the fight against the disease is making a real difference in the world, and her role as the first woman to head TWAS is a symbol of progress and hope for the future.
Apart from being the Deputy Chair of the South African Medical Research Council Board and the National Institutes of Health Office of AIDS Research Microbicides Planning Group, Professor Abdool Karim is a Scientific Advisory Board member of the United States President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) among other notable expert and advisory groups.
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