Dr Mziyanda Mbaba

Research Scientist | Malaria Chemistry

Mziyanda was born and raised in the deep rural areas of Cacadu, Eastern Cape, where he completed his primary and secondary education from the local village schools.

After matric, he completed his BSc. degree in chemistry and biochemistry (distinctions) in 2013 at Rhodes University in Makhanda. His passion for chemistry continued to postgraduate level where he completed an Honours degree (distinction) the following year and Masters in 2016 working on developing synthetic approaches towards analogues of a natural product, novobiocin, for cancer and malaria treatment through targeting heat shock protein 90 (Hsp90) and its client proteins under the supervision of Professors S.D. Khanye and A.L. Edkins. He completed his doctoral studies in 2019 under the same supervisors focusing on the repositioning of a polymer precursor for antiprotozoal and anticancer applications.

Continuing in the lineage of academic tutelage, he joined the research group of one of his “academic grandfathers”, Professor G.S. Smith, at UCT for his postdoctoral training from 2020 until June 2022 when he took up a position at H3D as a Research Scientist.