Babu L. Tekwani, Ph.D.
Distinguished Fellow and Chair, Infectious Disease Department
Babu Tekwani, Ph.D., directs the Infectious Disease Department within Southern Research’s Drug Discovery Division. The department focuses on the disease-causing mechanisms and novel therapeutic and vaccine approaches for a diverse array of pathogens, with the objective of identifying novel mechanisms, targets and strategies for the prevention and treatment of protozoal, bacterial and viral infectious diseases throughout the world.
Tekwani has spent more than 30 years researching tropical parasitic diseases such as malaria and leishmaniasis, vector-borne infectious diseases, and major global health threats. His work has identified potential new targets and sources for therapies against these diseases. Some of his most recent work focuses on developing a targeted drug delivery approach for a safer and more effective antimalarial therapeutic relative to currently used strategies against the disease for U.S. troops and global travelers. His research has been funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, the U.S. Department of Defense, and the U.S. Army Medical Research and Material Command.
Prior to his appointment at Southern Research, Tekwani worked at the University of Mississippi, where he served as principal scientist and professor of pharmacology at the School of Pharmacy’s National Center for Natural Products Research. Before joining the University of Mississippi in 2001, he worked as a scientist in the Biochemistry Division at the Central Drug Research Institute in Lucknow, India. He was awarded an international fellowship by the Fogarty International Center National Institute of Health and completed post-doctoral research training at the Milton S. Hershey Medical Center Penn State College of Medicine.
Tekwani received a doctorate in biochemistry from Lucknow University, a master’s degree in biochemistry from G.B. Pant University in Pantnagar, India, and a bachelor’s degree in biology from Rajasthan University in Jaipur, India. He has published more than 225 peer-reviewed manuscripts and has been issued two patents. His research has been recognized with several awards, including a career development award of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)/World Health Organization Tropical Diseases Research, The University of Mississippi School of Pharmacy Faculty Research Award, and the Distinguished Scientist Award for Global Health Drug Discovery and Global Challenges in Neglected Tropical Diseases.