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Uganda Virus Research Institute


Professor Pontiano Kaleebu Gets Honorary OBE

Professor Pontiano Kaleebu Appointed an Honorary Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) by His Majesty The King.

Professor Kaleebu, the outgoing Director of the Medical Research Council/Uganda Virus Research Institute and London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine Uganda Research Unit (MRC/UVRI & LSHTM Uganda Research Unit), has received the OBE in recognition of his services to education and public health.

During his 13 years as Director of the MRC/UVRI & LSHTM Uganda Research Unit, Professor Kaleebu oversaw many achievements including expanding the Unit’s research expertise beyond HIV into other viral pathogens, vaccine research and non-communicable diseases, making vital contributions to research in the East African region and globally and training many young scientists as the next generation of health leaders.

In January 2024 it was announced that Professor Moffat Nyirenda would take over the role of Director on 1 April 2024. Professor Kaleebu will now be devoting his time to immunovirology research.

Professor Kaleebu said: “I’m humbled and honoured to be awarded the OBE by HM The King of United Kingdom in recognition of my contributions to education and public health for the last more than 30 years, including nearly 14 years as Director of the MRC/UVRI & LSHTM Research Unit. This would not have been possible without the support and team effort of many colleagues in Uganda, UK and elsewhere.”

Professor Liam Smeeth, Director of LSHTM, said: “It is fantastic to see that Professor Kaleebu has been recognised for his exceptional work and leadership, over more than a decade, to drive forward the Unit’s research and education mission.”