The Maternal and Infant Lactation pharmacoKinetics study (MILK) at the Infectious Diseases Institute Makerere University is seeking one post-doctoral researcher for its fully-funded opportunity in the field pharmacokinetics in breastfeeding mother-infant pairs, funded by the Wellcome Clinical Research Career Development Fellowship held by Dr Catriona Waitt.
Pharmacometrics is an emerging discipline that uses mathematical and statistical tools to quantify drug, disease, and trial information to aid efficient drug development and/or regulatory decisions. It designs and applies mathematical models to describe the relationship between drug exposure (pharmacokinetics) and response (pharmacodynamics) for both desired and undesired effects, and aims to include in such models the effects of individual patient characteristics.
Worldwide, many women require medication whilst breastfeeding, but there is usually little information about how much drug transfers to the breastfed infant and what effects there might be to the infant. The Maternal and Infant Lactation pharmacoKinetics project seeks to explore the transfer from mother to breastfed infant of:
- First-line TB treatment (Uganda)
- First-line artemisinin-containing antimalarials (Uganda)
- Drug-resistant TB treatment (Cape Town)
- Bacterial infections (Liverpool)
The postdoctoral modeler will be involved in:
- Protocol and case report form design
- Interim analysis of data
- Development of pharmacokinetic models to describe drug transfer from mother to infant
Furthermore, this is an opportunity to join a vibrant group where there is increasing interest in the use of pharmacometrics to explore major clinical challenges and the role will also include:
- Involvement in the pharmacology group at IDI and the Uganda Chapter of Pharmacometrics Africa
- Capacity building activities among colleagues and juniors
- Involvement in the development of new grant proposals in related areas
- Stakeholder and public engagement activities to raise understanding of pharmacometrics
One Postdoctoral fellowship Position
Highly motivated science/engineering/data science researchers are invited to contribute to the research and training activities of the MILK programme at IDI:
- Eligible candidates will have obtained (or have submitted thesis) for PhD degree in pharmacometrics, applied mathematics, engineering, (bio-)statistics, or a closely related discipline within the past 5 years.
- The fellowship involves advanced mathematical/statistical/computer modelling and simulation. Strong quantitative skills and experience with computer programming (e.g. R, Matlab, C++) and data analysis are required.
- A good command of English, passion about scientific research, and the ability to work within a team are essential.
- Track-record of working in pharmacometrics: a 10-minute presentation of existing work will form part of the interview process.
Fellowship (up to 3 years, with annual renewal contingent on performance review) includes:
- A full-time stipend
- Research fund
- Collaborative networks with the University of Cape Town Division of Pharmacology and Pharmacometrics, and the University of Liverpool Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics (among others)
Under this program, scholars have the opportunity to participate in various short structured courses for training in clinical research and skill-building sessions that are ongoing at IDI. Through this experience, we hope to expose academically excellent students to the sub-specialty of infectious diseases and HIV medicine within the context of academic research
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