Nicholas Svitek

Nicholas Svitek

Dr Nicholas Svitek is a molecular virologist specialized in the field of animal RNA virology, and innate and cellular immunity.

Prior to joining ILRI in 2011, Nicholas was a postdoctoral research fellow in virology at Duke-National University of Singapore (NUS) in the Emerging Infectious Diseases (EID) research program, as well as a team leader for an international cooperation project in Mali, with the “Quebec without Borders” program. Nicholas has many years of experience studying the molecular biology of viral infections and viral pathogenesis in animal models. His research interests revolve around the immune response towards vaccines and infectious pathogens; virus-host interactions; antigen delivery systems; on the biology, pathogenesis, and molecular epidemiology of animal viruses; and in applied research for development.

Nicholas previously worked on two BMGF-funded projects to study the cellular immune response to Theileria parva, the causative agent of East Coast fever (ECF), and to develop a subunit vaccine that induces a protective cytotoxic T cell response in cattle towards this parasite. On a USAID-funded project, he also studied the immune response towards Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus and Peste des petits ruminants (PPR) virus vaccination in different livestock species.

He currently leads a small team of microbiologists working on the development of molecular diagnostic tools to detect pathogens in the field; on the molecular epidemiology of Bluetongue virus (BTV); and on the use of bacteriophages as a One Health approach for the replacement of antibiotics, and reduction of drug-resistant nontyphoidal Salmonella, in poultry farms in Kenya.

His work has resulted in more than 65 research outputs including scientific publications, book chapters, briefs, conference proceedings and papers presented at international scientific conferences.

Nicholas holds a BSc degree in Microbiology and Immunology and an MSc degree in Molecular Virology from the University of Montreal (Canada), as well as a PhD degree in Virology and Immunology from the INRS-IAF/University of Quebec (Canada), a member institute of the "Institut Pasteur International Network." He also completed a Postdoctoral training in Cellular Immunology and Reverse Vaccinology (Immunoinformatics) at ILRI, a Certificate of training in Genome Engineering & CRISPR-Cas Technology at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Germany, and is an EMIB candidate at ESCP. Nicholas is Canadian.

#EastCoastFever , #AfricanSwineFeverVirus , #BluetongueVirus , #RiftValleyFeverVirus , #AMR , #Bacteriophages , #Morbilliviruses

Publications: http://orcid.org/0000-0002-4539-5806