H3D’s executive committee (EXCO) is responsible for the formulation and oversight of H3D strategy, business plans and financial decisions.
Prof Kelly Chibale
Director of H3D
Kelly Chibale is the Founder and Director of H3D.Read more.
He is also the founding Director of the South African Medical Research Council Drug Discovery and Development Research Unit at the University of Cape Town (UCT). He is a full Professor of Organic Chemistry at UCT, a Tier 1 South Africa Research Chair in Drug Discovery and a Full Member of the UCT Institute of Infectious Disease & Molecular Medicine. Kelly is a Fellow of UCT, the Royal Society of South Africa and the Royal Society of Chemistry.
Kelly obtained his PhD in Synthetic Organic Chemistry from the University of Cambridge in the UK with Stuart Warren (1989-1992). This was followed by postdoctoral stints at the University of Liverpool in the UK as a British Ramsay Research Fellow with Nick Greeves (1992-94) and at The Scripps Research Institute in the USA as a Wellcome Trust International Prize Research Fellow with K.C. Nicolaou (1994-96). He was a Sandler Sabbatical Fellow at the University of California San Francisco in the USA (2002), a US Fulbright Senior Research Scholar at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine in the USA (2008) and a Visiting Professor at Pfizer in the UK (2008).
Dr Greg Basarab
Head of DMPK, Biosciences and Medicinal Chemistry
Greg Basarab has an appointment as a Principal Research Officer and Associate Director at UCT and the affiliated H3D where he heads efforts directed towards the eradication of resistant infectious diseases.
Previously, Dr. Basarab led multi-disciplinary drug discovery teams at AstraZeneca working on the design of novel mode-of-action antibacterials, efforts that led to three drug candidates entering human clinical trials including two currently in Phase 3. Previous to that, he worked at DuPont where he led projects in three departments: Central Research & Development, Biochemicals and Agricultural Products working in the antifungal arena and in automated chemical synthesis. He received a B.S. in Chemistry from the Pennsylvania State University and a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Dr Susan Winks
Head of Research Operations and Business Development
Dr Susan Winks is currently employed as the Head of Research Operations and Business Development at H3D and manages the team of professional staff that support the interdisciplinary drug discovery work at H3D.
Susan Winks obtained her BSc and BSc (Hons) degrees, both with distinction, at the University of Cape Town. She came top of her class for honours, winning herself the James Mohr Medal and was subsequently awarded the Andrew Mellon Scholarship to complete her PhD at the University of the Witwatersrand under the supervision of Prof. Jo Michael. During this time, she also worked as a Teaching Assistant, lecturing and tutoring chemistry to undergraduate students.
In 2010 Susan was appointed as a Research Scientist at iThemba Pharmaceuticals Ptd Ltd, a start-up biotech focused on drug discovery for neglected diseases. In 2011 she was promoted to Principal Scientist and became the team leader for various infectious disease drug discovery projects. During this time, Susan decided to pursue a part-time MBA through the Management College of South Africa, which she was subsequently awarded in 2014.
In August 2013, Susan was appointed as a Research Officer at H3D Drug Discovery and Development Centre, working as a lead chemist for a tuberculosis drug discovery project. The centre was at the start of its growth phase and Susan took the opportunity to get involved in establishing operations and project management systems to support the science. This included facilitating an organisational restructure to a Matrix-based structure to support interdisciplinary teamwork, design and implementation of a new strategic Human Resource system for the centre and improving data management systems, lab management systems and project management practices.
In 2019, Susan took up the position of Head of Research Operations and Business Development at H3D. Her role includes ensuring operational continuity and sustainable growth by long-term strategic planning, management of partnerships and stakeholders, fundraising and renewal of funding agreements, management of internal governance structures and portfolio oversight.
Mrs Ayesha Banderker CA (SA)
Finance and Administration Manager | Admin
Ayesha Banderker manages and enables the financial, systems, policy and administrative framework within which H3D is able to function optimally.
The position provides appropriate financial management and support services to the Director and general staff within the Centre in accordance with University requirements, policy and procedures. The position also ensures adherence to statutory requirements, assess risk and strives for operational efficiencies across the entire unit. She has been operating in the finance position for 7 years, setting up organisational systems and working to support the Centre.
Dr Sandeep Ghorpade
Principal Investigator, Medicinal Chemistry
Sandeep Ghorpade joined H3D in September 2014 as a Chief Research Officer. He is leading H3D TB portfolio since 2015 and has recently taken up responsibility of leading a hit-to-lead program for malaria.Read more.
With 11+ years of drug discovery experience in the pharmaceutical industry, Sandeep worked on several lead generation and lead optimization programs at AstraZeneca, India focused on discovering new medicines for TB. Sandeep is well versed with various lead generation approaches, using target-based and whole-cell based screens and has a keen interest in structure-based lead generation. He published six medicinal chemistry papers and a patent based on his work in TB drug discovery research at AstraZeneca. Before joining AstraZeneca, Sandeep worked at Glenmark Research Centre on diabetes projects, from which he added another patent to his credit.
University of Cape Town
Private Bag X3
T | 021 650 5495
E | 021 650 5195