Derick Osakunor

Derick Osakunor



Group member since October 2016

Supervisors: Dr Francisca Mutapi

Project title: Investigating the human-schistosome interactome in naturally exposed human populations.

Project summary

Urinary schistosomiasis is caused by Schistosoma haematobium. It affects 60% of African children with about 14 million of them below age 5. Protective immunity develops upon infection but this is very slow and occurs over years, by which time many of these children would have developed morbidity and risk a series of re-infections. Upon treatment with praziquantel, it has been shown that these children can develop protective immunity. So what is the best treatment strategy to boost protective immune responses in young children to reduce re-infection and morbidity? I am interested in determining gene expression markers to elucidate immunological and biochemical basis of reduced re-infection and morbidity in young children following treatment with praziquantel. I also propose to determine if gut and urine microbiome predisposes children to S. haematobium, infection and morbidity. I believe my research will provide information and demonstrate how surveillance, diagnosis and treatment of first schistosome infections can be integrated into existing health delivery systems.


MPhil (08.2011 – 09.2013) Chemical Pathology; Department of Molecular medicine, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana

BSc (Hons) (08.20016- 05.20101) Medical Laboratory Technology:  Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana