1984 - 1990 Non-clinical Post Doctoral Research Scientist, Division of Parasitology, National Institute for Medical Research, The Ridgeway, Mill Hill, London NW7 1AA, United Kingdom.
1990 - 1994 Non-clinical Post Doctoral Research Scientist, Division of Parasitology, National Institute for Medical Research, United Kingdom, & WHO Malaria Laboratory, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok 10330, Thailand.
1994 - 1999 Post Doctoral Research Fellow in Parasitology, Department of Infection and Tropical Medicine, Imperial College School of Medicine, Lister Unit, Northwick Park Hospital, Harrow, Middlesex HA1 3UJ, United Kingdom.
2000 - 2001 Senior Scientist, Unité de Parasitologie Biomédicale, Institut Pasteur, 25 & 28 Rue du Dr. Roux, 75724 Paris Cedex 15, France.
2001 - 2004 Directeur de Recherche 2ème Classe (DR2) CNRS, URA2581 and Unité de Parasitologie Biomédicale, Institut Pasteur, Paris, France.
2004 – 2008 Directeur de Recherche 2ème Classe (DR2) CNRS. Head of " Parasitologie Comparée et Modèles Expérimentaux" USM 307, CNRS IFR101, Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle, Paris, France.
2008 – Directeur de Recherche 2ème Classe (DR2) CNRS. Senior Scientist at the UPMC/INSERM UMR S 945 (previously UMR S 945) “Infection & Immunité”, Université Pierre et Marie Curie (Paris VI), Centre Hospitalo-Universitaire Pitié-Salpêtrière, 91 Boulevard de l’Hôpital-75643 Paris Cedex 13, France.
My scientific career has been dedicated to the study of Plasmodium protozoan parasites, the causative agents of malaria. This parasitic disease, predominantly prevalent in the subtropical poorer areas of the globe, exacts immense health and economic burdens. My interest in these pathogens does not only rest on their major impact on Public Health, but also because they offer a quintessential model for fundamental biological studies. Indeed, Plasmodium parasites multiply in two dissimilar hosts, the insect and the vertebrate, where they adopt distinct morphological forms. The success of malaria parasites derives from a series of rich and complex immunological, biochemical and biological interactions with their hosts. Elucidation of the mechanisms implicated is an intellectual challenge rich in potential, where advances would simultaneously impact on the discovery of new control methods.
The overall approach I have adopted during my research in malaria was the application of molecular biological techniques to elucidate various aspects of malaria biology. The questions I have addressed were selected in the context of a broad understanding of the infection from an epidemiological, immunological, clinical and biological perspective. I have not restricted myself to a single model system. The diverse range of rodent malaria models available afford the opportunity to undertake experimental approaches that are impossible to envisage in humans. Field and clinical observations in humans allowed defining and prioritising facets of the infection for further investigation. I consider it both important and intellectually enriching to confront, whenever appropriate, data derived from human with those obtained in the laboratory models, and from observations of other natural host-parasite combinations. The importance of the genetical diversity that each parasite species displays has been a constant factor in my research. I have devised tools and approaches that have been widely adopted by the malaria research community and now constitute a basis for the molecular epidemiological studies conducted on malaria. It became possible for the first time to conduct investigations where the dynamics of distinct parasite populations could be established and correlated with immunological, biological and clinical parameters of the infection.
I actively pursue investigations that address four broad topics: a) the genetic diversity of Plasmodium species that infect humans b) the biology and immunology of the hepatic stage of the infection, c) the pathogenesis of cerebral malaria, and d) the molecular characterization of Plasmodium species in higher primates.