Mapaseka Luyanda Seheri

PROF, Director for Research, Postgraduate Studies and Innovations/ Director SMU Diarrhoeal Pathogens Research Unit (DPRU)/ WHO Rotavirus Regional Reference laboratory

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

Please contact me to this email: [email protected]

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Research activity per year

Personal profile

Research Interests

  1. Working in collaboration with WHO AFRO and Ministries of Health (MoH) in Africa to generate data on the circulating rotavirus strains in the region and to support awareness and regional advocacy for the introduction of rotavirus vaccines.
  2. Working with team on “Rotavirus genomics and metagenomics of African stool samples” to explore in-depth genomic diversity of rotavirus strains circulating in African human and animal populations and to investigate novel diarrhoeal pathogens in African children through metagenomics
  3. Conduct epidemiological and surveillance studies for diarrhoeal pathogens in 5 African countries
  4. Conduct genetic diversity and evolutionary relationship of enteric viruses (norovirus, astrovirus, adenovirus types 40 and 41, hepatitis A and Hepatitis E)
  5. Conduct microbiome and metagenomics of the gut

Personal profile

I have strong background knowledge of strategy development and execution within the research directorate. My sixteen years of experience in the Department of Virology has provided me with a broad knowledge of excellence in research, teaching and administrative duties. I have earned local and international recognition in the field of viral gastroenteritis, where I have made valuable contribution in the introduction of rotavirus vaccine in South Africa and the success of the WHO rotavirus regional reference laboratory- South Africa. My duties included generating data on the circulating rotavirus strains in the in the African continent and working closely with the National Department of Health, Ministries of Health of 16 African countries and the WHO African Region (AFRO). In addition, my responsibilities have provided me an opportunity to collaboration with the National Institute of Communicable Diseases, the World Health Organization (WHO), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, the University of Cincinnati, and the J Craig Venter Institute in the USA.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
  • SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
  • SDG 17 - Partnerships for the Goals

Education/Academic qualification

PhD, Virology, Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University

Award Date: 7 May 2010


  • RB Pathology
  • Virology
  • Microbiology
  • Diarrhoea
  • Vaccines


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