Associate Professor, Molecular, Cellular, & Biomedical Sciences, COLSA ~ Egypt
In June 2019, I travelled to Egypt to work on a collaborative research grant with Dr. Enas Mustafa at the Egyptian Atomic Energy Authority (EAEA) in Cairo. This project was previously submitted for funding but not funded. Dr. Mustafa and I worked on reviewing possible weakness of the proposal and mechanisms to strengthen it. I toured the research facilities at the EAEA to gain a better understanding of their research infrastructure.
During my stay in Cairo, I presented a research seminar at the EAEA and met with various faculty and graduate students. During my meetings with the graduate students, we discussed various topics from publishing a paper to enrolling into a graduate program in the United States. I also visited the National Research Center (NRC) in Cairo and met with faculty in the Pharmacognosy Department. I presented a research seminar on our research at UNH on targeting the tumor microenvironment as a strategy to enhance cancer therapy. After meeting with faculty and graduate students, I developed a research collaboration with the group of Dr. Khaled Hanafi which will serve as the foundation for future grant proposals. Dr. Hanafi’s laboratory group is interested in anticancer drug discovery and our labs will be collaborating on a project to investigate the efficacy of plant-based extracts as anticancer drugs. Together, Dr. Hanafi from NRC, Dr. Mustafa from EAEA, Dr. Mai Zahra from the Faculty of Science, Ain Shams University and I are working on joint research projects that will lay the foundation for future grant proposal. The team is very excited about the project. We are currently working on a collaborative research project to define the mechanism of action of various anticancer drugs.
During my visit with Dr. Zahra and Dr. Hanafi, we discussed the possibility of teaching a graduate Immunology course during the summer semester in Cairo. We also discussed the possibility of teaching an Immunology lab workshop during the summer at the NRC in Cairo. I will be looking at the possibility of developing a UNH-based study abroad program that will allow UNH students and students in Egypt to take advantage of such a course.
Overall, my trip to Egypt was an amazing experience! I am much more aware of the biomedical research done in Egypt. Our research collaboration is key to future grant proposals. Thanks to the Global Education Center for the Faculty International Development Grant that enabled me to meet with my collaborator and allowed me the opportunity to establish new research collaborations.