Rizqah Kamies

In 2009, after completing a BSc. in Biochemistry with Honours, I initiated my postgraduate career in Molecular and Cell Biology at the University of Cape Town, South Africa. My research interests were focused on Plant Science, particularly plant stress tolerance to extreme environmental change, under the guidance and tutelage of Assoc. Prof Suhail Rafudeen and Prof Jill Farrant. In this stimulating environment, I delved deeper into the molecular workings of abiotic stress response in both model and non-model plant species. As a result, I received a distinction for my MSc. degree awarded in 2011 and achieved my PhD in 2015, for the doctoral thesis titled, “A proteomic approach to investigate the response of tef (Eragrotis tef) to drought”. In this time, I was nominated as one of the National Research Foundations (NRF) next generation researchers. In 2017, I undertook a postdoctoral research position with Assoc. Prof Anwar Jardine and Prof Kevin Naidoo in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Cape Town where I observed glyco-enzymatic proteins active in breast cancer and their biochemical interaction with targeted inhibitors as potential drug targets.

Throughout my research career I have been deeply invested in ‘omic’ responses to perturbations in the system understudy and have realised the importance of an integrated, multi-level analyses to completely answer pertinent research questions. In 2019, I was awarded the Postdoctoral Fellowship Program of the Helmholtz Zentrum München and joined the research group of Dr Celia Martinez-Jimenez at the Helmholtz Pioneer Campus investigating Molecular Ageing in targeted tissues at single-cell resolution. My current research goal with this excellent team, is to investigate the accumulation of fat in the human liver as a consequence of ageing and observe how this is epigenetically modulated in a multi-level analysis.