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Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene - Education - Nairaland

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Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by VisibleDreamz: 8:05pm On Jul 19
Growing up in Nigeria, one of Chidozie Ojobor’s most visceral memories was the death of his older sister, Ginika, who died of typhoid fever in 1999.

“Her death caused me to want to understand what typhoid meant, the organism that caused the disease, how it was disseminated and so on,” says Ojobor, who would go on to study microbiology at the University of Nigeria.

His curiosity about infectious diseases became a passion, and his master’s education led to the study of phage therapy – using viruses to treat bacteria.

In particular, he uses “tailocins” – built from parts of viruses – to defeat the bugs.

“Thinking that my sister may have been infected by a resistant strain that wouldn't bow to antibiotics that were administered to her got me more interested in phage therapy,” says Ojobor, a PhD candidate in the lab of Alan Davidson, a professor of molecular genetics in the Faculty of Medicine.

Ojobor set out to understand the molecular processes of disease, with an interest in diagnosis and how diseases metabolize in the body.

His drive to combat infectious disease and, subsequently, superbugs, got the attention of MPOWER Financing, a Washington, D.C.-based company that offers loans to international students. Ojobor was named one of four winners of their Global Citizen scholarship this past spring.

He is the first Canadian university student to win the scholarship. He was picked by MPOWER staff out of 1,121 eligible applications – which they cite as a record number of applicants.

The $5,000 scholarships were awarded on the strength of applicants' essay submissions. Ojobor’s submission identified the need to address the threat of superbugs.

“Antibiotic-resistant bacteria, if left unchecked, would cause 10 million deaths yearly, worldwide, by 2050 [according to a CDC report]. So, there is great need to search for alternatives to the conventional antibiotics,” he wrote. “In the last 3 years of my PhD in Canada, I have identified novel bacteria-killing entities, called tailocins, which I have successfully used to kill resistant bacteria, in the laboratory. Interestingly, in any case that the bacteria then develop resistance, I can genetically engineer the tailocins to overpower the resistant superbugs.”

With tailocins, Ojobor has been able to kill antibiotic-resistant bacteria in the lab. Ojobor’s hope is that he can genetically engineer them to overpower superbugs as cases arise – with treatments in the form of pills and other therapies.

“That, for me, is a high point of the research – that we are able to keep up with that [antibiotic] resistance,” says Ojobor, who joined Davidson’s lab in 2015. “The potential for the research is great and is, for me, really interesting.”

Davidson is full of praise for Ojobor, who he says is "a higly appreciated member of our group.

“Chidozie is a very motivated student with a strong drive to make a difference with his research. He is making important discoveries,” says Davidson, whose lab focuses on antibiotic-resistant bacteria and phage therapies. “He also is a wonderfully warm and engaging person.”

Ojobor is thankful to be named a scholarship winner. He is also grateful for his professor, who has been “super supportive” since he arrived at U of T.

“I think about him as that person who is pivotal to my success,” says Ojobor. “He’s led me in the right direction. We’ve had a great relationship.”

As Ojobor’s education nears its end next year, he is thinking about what to do next with his research. He is leaning towards a public health focus, applying his work to developing countries like Nigeria. He is also considering starting a company “to see how we can take what we are already doing now in the lab and take it to the next level.”

Ojobor is happy to be funnelling his passion into something about which his sister would be proud.

“I feel great and encouraged that I am contributing to this field and, one day, [will] prevent many young and promising Ginikas from dying from resistantfrom dying from resistant bacteria.”


SOURCE:
https://www.utoronto.ca/news/u-t-phd-student-wins-global-scholarship-combating-antibiotic-resistant-superbugs

45 Likes 7 Shares

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by superlightning: 8:20pm On Jul 19
Igbo amaka

110 Likes 6 Shares

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by selemempe: 9:25pm On Jul 19
Dozie my man...he got distiction again in his masters

93 Likes 2 Shares

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by ebuka10box(m): 6:23am On Jul 20
2bedroom flat for rent @port harcourt , Ada George axis for 350k, 400k, 450,500 . Hit me up if you are interested 07066196319

1 Like

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by sparog(m): 6:54am On Jul 20
Good stuff

1 Like 1 Share

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by partnerbizz5(f): 7:04am On Jul 20
Great lion.



Naija dey hustle abeg.

Later one man will say they are lazy..

15 Likes

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by PatrickOkunima(m): 7:42am On Jul 20
selemempe:
Dozie my man...he got 1st class again in his masters

There's no First Class in Masters.

29 Likes

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by IamNotWariz: 7:42am On Jul 20
PatrickOkunima:


There's no First Class in Masters.
you never can tell. That guy you quoted might be from another planet

48 Likes

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by Factgist: 7:56am On Jul 20
Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by Lovelyn451(f): 7:57am On Jul 20
Handsome with brains...congrats

1 Like 1 Share

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by NwaJozi: 7:57am On Jul 20
Igbo Amaka

6 Likes 2 Shares

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by GeneralPula: 7:57am On Jul 20
PatrickOkunima:


There's no First Class in Masters.

9 Likes

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by haaaaaaaaa(m): 7:57am On Jul 20
Brains
Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by qanda: 7:57am On Jul 20
Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by Onlinealaba(m): 7:58am On Jul 20
Nigeria amaka..nice one

3 Likes 1 Share

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by mrvitalis(m): 7:58am On Jul 20
Na only person way no know no know

In terms of quality UNN rangs up there amounts the top 2 university in nigeria

Na just infrastructure dey kill is for ranking

Proud to be a super lion

21 Likes 1 Share

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by Dave0116(m): 7:59am On Jul 20
grin
IamNotWariz:
you never can tell. That guy you quoted might be from another planet

2 Likes

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by NaijaCelebNews: 7:59am On Jul 20
.
Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by Franzinni: 7:59am On Jul 20
Positive news will be a good introduction... Especially those that boosts patriotism


Something Nigerians of today have NONe!


Even our so called leaders are devoid of patriotism... so it's nice to see positivity back to back on this platform this morning....

1 Like

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by Blessed13(m): 8:00am On Jul 20
Ok Ooooooh
Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by famzynet: 8:00am On Jul 20
partnerbizz5:
Great lion.



Naija dey hustle abeg.

Later one man will say they are lazy..





Do you mind that useless impostor.

4 Likes

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by crafteck(m): 8:01am On Jul 20
Lol... Una don start
Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by dalongjnr: 8:03am On Jul 20
I'm attracted to intelligent fellows. Keep it up, bro.

1 Like

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by Mires: 8:03am On Jul 20
selemempe:
Dozie my man...he got 1st class again in his masters

Why the publicity for your ignorance?

2 Likes

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by bonnyhope: 8:04am On Jul 20
PatrickOkunima:


There's no First Class in Masters.
What is the system of grading at Msc level
Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by VisibleDreamz: 8:05am On Jul 20
1st time my post is hitting front page. I dedicate it to all the hardworking Nigerian youths.
Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by VisibleDreamz: 8:06am On Jul 20
All hail the Super Lion ~ Dozie

2 Likes

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by Widall: 8:06am On Jul 20
My fellow super lion doing us proud. Keep it up.
Only 2 universities in Nigeria, UNN and others.

1 Like

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by Mires: 8:06am On Jul 20
UNN First Class graduates are known to make waves once they leave the shore of Nigeria. Prof. John Ataguba of UCT is one of them.

2 Likes

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by charleymed(m): 8:07am On Jul 20
Mires:
UNN First Class graduates are known to make waves once they leave the shore of Nigeria. Prof. John Ataguba of UCT is one of them.
Distinction. Pass. Fail

1 Like

Re: Chidozie Ojobor, A first Class graduate of UNN, makes waves At the global scene by youngRx(m): 8:08am On Jul 20
This is what happens when one studies a course they have strong passion for, one with something that drives them to, and not because it is the only means to getting a great job.

Until the economic environment of this country is thriving enough for individuals to go for courses they're passionate about, I'm afraid there won't be any scientific breakthroughs from this region anytime soon.

Congrats to the guru. it's rare to find the blackman on the positive side of international news these days.

7 Likes

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