How to catch a pig and its viruses in Uganda

Published on: Author: the CVR science blog editors

In the latest episode of Contagious Thinking, join CVR PhD student Jack Hirst and postdoc Connor Bamford as they chat with Dr Charles Masembe (follow him on Twitter:@cmasembe10about his work on some of Africa’s most important animal viruses.

Charles works currently on a virus called African swine fever virus (ASFV), which causes a deadly disease in domestic pigs that can cause great economic and political turmoil in affected regions. ASFV is a fascinating large DNA virus that is spread by wild pigs and the ticks that feed on them. The virus can move between the wild pigs and farmed domestic pigs. Understanding this movement is a major focus of Charles’ work.

Charles is a veterinarian and molecular epidemiologist by training and is an associate professor at the College of Natural Sciences at Makerere University in Uganda. He is working in a collaboration with scientists at the CVR to sequence ASFV samples from pigs across Uganda. His work is funded by a recently awarded Wellcome Trust Intermediate Fellowship in Public Health and Tropical Medicine.