Doctoral Degree Increases Graduate’s Self-Confidence
‘This degree will help me carve out a good career teaching in pharmacy schools at universities. I am very glad that I was successful - the sense of accomplishment has increased my self-confidence.’
So, says Dr Nawras Osman of the Sudan who was awarded a PhD in Pharmaceutics.
Osman’s work was titled: Surface Modification of Nano-Drug Delivery Systems for Enhancing Antibiotic Activity and Activity to Combat Antibiotic Resistance.
She was supervised by Professor Thirumala Govender.
Said Osman: ‘The broad aim of this study was to synthesise novel stimuli-responsive materials with multifunctional activity for the surface modification of niosomes to maximise the compatibility and therapeutic efficacy of conventional niosomes and provide an additive therapeutic significance by minimising the required effective dose and the subsequent dose-dependent adverse effects of the vancomycin antibiotic.’
She said her research generated novel polymers and their associated formulations as pharmaceutical products. ‘Introducing such innovative materials can stimulate the pharmaceutical industry to develop smart biomaterials to improve nanoantibiotics delivery and conventional dosage forms.’
According to Osman, bacterial infections are one of the leading causes of death globally despite significant research in the area.
‘The rise of bacterial resistance to multiple classes of antibiotics increases mortality and morbidity rates. Therefore, the aim of this study was to synthesise novel stimuli-responsive materials with multifunctional activity for the surface modification of niosomes to enhance the antibacterial, antibiofilm and antivirulence activity against Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bacteria which is significant in developing better delivery systems for the potential treatment of bacterial infections.’
Osman experienced several challenges during her studies, including stress, being away from home and family, funding issues, time management and maintaining a good work/life balance.
‘I managed to overcome all the challenges with the help and support of my great supervisors and family, as well as by trying to be positive and optimistic, pushing myself and being persistent.’
Osman, who is currently a lecturer at the School of Pharmacy at the University of Gezira in Sudan, is looking for work in a country that offers growth and job opportunities.
‘My real strength is my attention to detail and using my problem-solving skills. It’s all about learning to see things through someone else’s eyes,’ she said.
She enjoys reading, gardening and watching movies.
Words: Nombuso Dlamini