Tulio de Oliveira

Profile image of Professor Tuliode Oliveira

Prof. Tulio de Oliveira, the director of the Centre for Epidemic Response and Innovation (CERI) and the KwaZulu-Natal Research Innovation and Sequencing Platform (KRISP), played a leading role in the response to COVID-19 in South Africa through his visionary application of genomics and bioinformatics. Prof. de Oliveira is a Professor of Bioinformatics at the School for Data Science and Computational Thinking, Stellenbosch University and at the College of Health Sciences at University of KwaZulu-Natal.

He has received his BSc at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Brazil and MSc/PhD at the Nelson R Mandela School of Medicine, UKZN, South Africa. He was a Marie Curie Research Fellow at the University of Oxford, U.K. from 2004 to 2006 and a Newton Advanced Fellow at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute (WTSI) and at the University of Edinburgh from 2015-2019. In 2015, he became a Professor at UKZN and in 2018, Associate Professor on Global Health at the University of Washington, Seattle, USA and in 2021, he became a Professor at Stellenbosch University.

Prof. de Oliveira has worked for over 20 years with viral outbreaks, including HIV, Hepatitis B and C, Chikungunya, Dengue, SARS-CoV-2, Zika, and Yellow Fever Virus. Prof. de Oliveira has more than 300 publications, with many of them in high impact scientific journals.

Prof. de Oliveira was listed in Nature as being one of the top ten people who helped to shape science in 2021. He was also included in the MIT Technology Review list as one of the leaders of the ten breakthrough technologies in 2022. In the same year, he received the Gold Medal Award from the South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC) for his outstanding contributions to the field. Additionally, the Government of South Africa bestowed upon him the Batho Pele Award for his remarkable societal impact and the Portuguese President awarded him the Order of Merit Medal. He was also the co-recipient of the German Africa Prize for his contributions towards identifying the COVID-19 Omicron variant.