Dr Thesla Palanee-Phillips, Director: Network Trials


Dr Thesla Palanee-Phillips is the Director for Network Trials at Wits RHI. She obtained her Master’s degree in Medical Science cum laude and obtained her PhD in Physiology/Biochemistry. She subsequently completed an MSc in Clinical Trials with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Dr Palanee-Phillips is currently the lead investigator on the majority of Microbicide Trial Network (MTN) protocols and also leads the organisational wide Laboratory and Regulatory Oversight teams. Dr Palanee-Phillips has spearheaded a Laboratory expansion initiative that now includes Flow cytometry and GeneXpert ensuring tests are done on site for real time resulting and treatment study participants. She is the Principal investigator (PI) on MTN 034, a cross over design trial that will assess acceptability of and adherence to oral truvada and the dapivirine vaginal ring in adolescent girls and young women. She is also PI on MTN 035 that aims to assess acceptability, tolerability and adherence to rectal products among men who have sex with men. She is the co-principal investigator of a five-year USAID grant awarded in 2015 called the Community Health clinic model for Agency in Relationships and Safer Microbicide Adherence (CHARISMA) with a focus on intimate partner violence. Last year Dr Palanee-Phillips received an award from the Wits Faculty of Health Sciences in recognition of her dedication and achievement in Research.