NE Collins

Dr NE Collins

BSc (Wits) BSc (Hons)(Wits) PhD (Wits)
Extraordinary Lecturer: Molecular Biology

Dr Nicola Collins

Office
Room 2-41
Paraclinical Building

Postal address
Department of Veterinary Tropical Diseases
Faculty of Veterinary Science
P/Bag X04, Onderstepoort 0110, South Africa

Telephone
+27 12 529 8022

Email
[email protected]

Biography

Nicola Collins was educated at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg.  In 1992 she joined the Agricultural Research Council – Onderstepoort Veterinary Institute where she completed her Ph.D.  Following a post doctoral fellowship in 1999 at the Center for Biomedical Inventions, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, USA, she returned to the ARC-OVI where she was appointed leader of research projects in the Heartwater Programme.  She joined the Department of Veterinary Tropical Diseases, University of Pretoria in 2003 where she currently holds a part-time appointment.

Subjects taught at undergraduate and postgraduate levels

  • Recombinant vaccine development for heartwater
  • Development of molecular diagnostic tests for piroplasm parasites
  • Molecular characterization of piroplasm parasites

Research interests

Her research career has mainly focused on molecular studies of haemoparasites of veterinary importance.  She was one of the principal researchers involved in the sequencing of the 1.5 Mb Ehrlichia ruminantium genome, which was published in January 2005 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America; in 2005 this journal had an impact factor of 10.231. The E. ruminantium genome sequence was the first bacterial genome to be completed in Africa, and was a major achievement for all the researchers involved. It will be an invaluable resource in future heartwater research.  She has also been involved in the development of molecular diagnostic tests for Theileria parva, Theileria equi and Babesia caballi and in the molecular characterization of these parasites.  Recent research revealed the existence of genetic and serological heterogeneity in T. equi and B. caballi parasites in South Africa, which explains the failure of many molecular and serological tests to detect these parasites in field samples in this country. 

Her current research includes the molecular characterization of vaccine candidates from Anaplasma marginale strains in South Africa (Post doctoral fellow: Mamohale Chaisi; PhD student: Paidashe Hove) in collaboration with Dr Kelly Brayton (Washington State University, USA) and Dr Sibusiso Mtshali (NRF-National Zoological Gardens, Pretoria).  She is also working in collaboration with Dr Marinda Oosthuizen on the characterization of A. marginale and A. marginale subsp. centrale in cattle and buffalo (student: Zamantugwa Khumalo). Other projects include the identification T. parva carrier cattle in the Mnisi Community Area and the characterization of T. parva parasites identified (Chimvwele Choopa).

Postgraduate Students (2013-2016)


Students Supervised

Name of student

Degree

Supervisor

Co-supervisor(s)

First year of registration

Graduation

Evalyne N Njiiri

Web-based M.Sc.

Self

Dr M.C. Oosthuizen (University of Pretoria)
Dr K. P. Sibeko (University of Pretoria)
Dr P. Toye (ILRI, Kenya)

2010

April 2013

Chimvwele N Choopa

M.Sc.

Self

Dr D. Knobel (University of Pretoria)
Dr D. Geysen (Institute for Tropical Medicine, Antwerp)

2012

April 2016

Paidashe Hove

Ph.D.

Self

Dr M.C. Oosthuizen (University of Pretoria)
Dr K.A. Brayton (Washington State University)
Dr M.S. Mtshali (National Zoological Gardens)

2013

 

Janine Baxter

B.Sc. (Hons)

Self

Dr M.E. Chaisi (University of Pretoria)

2014

April 2015

Sizanobuhle Phili

Web-based M.Sc.

Self

Dr M.E. Chaisi (University of Pretoria)

2015

 

Marcus Makgabo

M.Sc.

Self

Dr L. Biggs (HHWRS, UP), Dr M.C. Oosthuizen (University of Pretoria)

2016

 


Students Co-supervised

Name of student

Degree

Supervisor

Co-supervisor(s)

First year of registration

Graduation

Elizabeth M Debeila

M.Sc.

Dr M.C. Oosthuizen (University of Pretoria)

Self
Dr T.P. Matjila (University of Pretoria)

2009

April 2013

Stephen Tembo

Web-based M.Sc.

Dr M.C. Oosthuizen (University of Pretoria)

Self
Dr K.P. Sibeko (University of Pretoria)

2010

April 2013

Dewald Eygelaar

M.Sc.

Dr M.C. Oosthuizen (University of Pretoria)

Self
Dr F. Jori (University of Pretoria)

2012

April 2016

Zamantungwa Khumalo

Ph.D.

Dr M.C. Oosthuizen (University of Pretoria)

Self, Dr K.A. Brayton (Washington State University)

2013

 

Charles Byaruhanga

Ph.D.

Dr M.C. Oosthuizen (University of Pretoria)

Self, Dr D. Knobel (University of Pretoria)

2013

 

Teboho Tsotetsi

M.Sc.

Dr K.P. Sibeko (University of Pretoria)

Self

2013

 

Trevor Molemane

M.Sc.

Dr K.P. Sibeko (University of Pretoria)

Self

2013

 

Nicole Liesching

Web-based M.Sc.

Dr M.C. Oosthuizen (University of Pretoria)

Self

2013

April 2015

Gloria Patsanza

Ph.D.

Dr K.P. Sibeko (University of Pretoria)

Self

2014

 

Itumeleng Setshedi

Ph.D.

Dr K.P. Sibeko (University of Pretoria)

Self

2014

 

Agatha Kolo

Ph.D.

Dr M.C. Oosthuizen (University of Pretoria)

Self, Dr K.A. Brayton (Washington State University)

2015

 

Research output/publications

Click here to view a list of publications.

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