Profile: Raj Ramesar is Professor and Head of the Division of Human Genetics, and the Department of Pathology at the University of Cape Town and its Affiliated Hospitals. Raj is also Director of the MRC Research Unit for Genomic and Precision Medicine. His group is internationally recognised for their work on the genetics of inherited cancers and Inherited Retinal Degenerative Diseases. They have identified a wide range of new genes and mutations in South African families, and their more recent work is focussed on genetic studies in indigenous African communities. Raj has more than 200 publications in international journals and chapters in books, and he serves on the Editorial Board of several international journals.
Raj received the (Vice Chancellor’s) Alan Pifer Award for ‘outstanding research in cancer genetics. In 2016, he was invited to join UCT’s College of Fellows and he was awarded the International Human Genome Organisations (HUGO) Africa Award in Houston, USA. He serves on the board of the Sunflower Fund and is chairman of the Board of the Africa Genome Education Institute. Raj also holds an executive MBA degree from UCT’s Graduate School of Business. His non-academic pursuits include painting in acrylic and watercolours, as well as growing bonsai.