Dr. Yvonne Lim Ai Lian is a senior professor at the Department of Parasitology, Faculty of Medicine, Universiti Malaya, Kuala Lumpur. Currently, she is the Associate Vice-Chancellor (Global Engagement), Universiti Malaya. She is also a University Senate Member and a Council Member of the Academy of Sciences Malaysia. Prior to this, she has taken on leadership roles as the Deputy Dean (Research) at the Faculty of Medicine and the Director of International Relations Office, Universiti Malaya. She was also a former president of the Malaysian Society of Parasitology and Tropical Medicine (MSPTM).
Her research focuses on understanding the host-parasite-environment interactions of diseases among the indigenous and underserved communities in attempting to provide multi-targeted solutions. In addition, she is also involved in studying the diversity of gut microbiome of communities from a range of socioeconomic and ecological gradients, namely from traditional to industrialized societies. Her work has been funded by various national and international grants (eg. US NIHR01 grant). She has published more than 230 scientific papers, 9 book chapters and 3 books. She has supervised more than 30 PhD and MSc students to completion. She also has a vast network of local and international partnerships. She was a visiting researcher at the Scottish Parasite Diagnostic and Reference Laboratory (formerly SPDL), Glasgow, Scotland, a visiting fellow at the Department of Veterinary Science, University of Melbourne, Australia and a visiting professor at the Department of Molecular Parasitology and Tropical Diseases, Taipei Medical University, Taiwan and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), USA.
She is a member of the International Scientific Advisory Committee (SAC) in the Infectious Diseases Data Observatory Schistosomiasis and Soil-Transmitted Helminthiasis Data Treatment Platform. She was also involved in the formulation of the National Policy for the Development of Orang Asli (Indigenous) with the Department of Orang Asli Development (JAKOA), Malaysia.
She has received numerous awards and recognitions, among which were the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene Centenary Scholarship, Malaysian Society of Parasitology and Tropical Medicine Medal for being an outstanding young scientist, the Universiti Malaya Excellence Award for outstanding achievement in the category of Excellent Lecturer (for Sciences) and the Top Research Scientists Malaysia Award. She was also awarded the Malaysian Society of Parasitology and Tropical Medicine Life Membership and was appointed a fellow of the Academy of Sciences Malaysia. She was featured as one of the 10 Science Stars of East Asia in Nature in 2019. She was also cited by Stanford University as one of the World’s Top 2% Scientists for the years 2019, 2021 and 2023 in her respective field. In 2021, she was awarded the Fulbright Scholar Award 2021/2022 for an attachment at the Laboratory of Parasitic Diseases, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), National Institutes of Health (NIH), USA. Recently, she was appointed the co-chair of the APRU Asia Pacific Women in Leadership (APWiL) Program from 2022-2025.