PROF. DR. YVONNE LIM AI LIAN
|Department of Parasitology|
|Faculty of Medicine|
|Department of Parasitology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, 50603 Kuala Lumpur, W.Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia|
Dr. Yvonne Lim Ai Lian is a senior professor at the Department of Parasitology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya (UM), Kuala Lumpur and a fellow of the Academy of Sciences Malaysia. Currently, she is the Director of International Relations Office (IRO), University of Malaya and serves on the University Senate. She was the former Deputy Dean (Research) of Faculty of Medicine, UM and the past president of the Malaysian Society of Parasitology and Tropical Medicine (MSPTM).
Professor Lim’s research focuses on host-parasite interactions and the epidemiology and control of neglected tropical diseases primarily among the indigenous communities. Her work has been funded by various national and international grants (e.g. NIH). In her pursuit to better understand and control these diseases, her team has developed and evaluated effective (in terms of time and cost) solutions, such as multi-hits health education packages, rapid molecular diagnostics and provision of spatial distribution maps using geographic information system (GIS). In recent years, there is also a growing interest that some parasites such as helminths (worms) may in fact play a role in the future treatment of inflammatory diseases. Using multidisciplinary approaches (including next generation sequencing [NGS]), her team’s landmark publication with collaborators from New York University in Science unravelled the mechanisms of how low levels of helminth infection promote growth of probiotic gut microbiota which may lead to the discovery of potential biomarkers and novel interventional strategies towards utilising helminths as a therapeutic approach. Her team has now expanded the gut microbiota work to other cohorts of patients such as HIV and cancer patients.
She has published more than 160 scientific papers, 9 book chapters and 3 books. She also has a vast network of local and international partnerships. She was a visiting fellow at the Department of Veterinary Science, University of Melbourne, Australia and was appointed a visiting professor at the Department of Molecular Parasitology and Tropical Diseases, Taipei Medical University, Taiwan. She was a temporary advisor to the World Health Organization (WHO) meeting for the schistosomiasis & soil-transmitted helminthiases data platform which resulted in her current involvement as the Scientific Advisory Committee (SAC) in the Infectious Diseases Data Observatory (IDDO) Schistosomiasis and Soil-Transmitted Helminthiasis Data Treatment Platform.
Professor Lim is a panel member of evaluators for various national research grant schemes. She has received numerous awards and recognitions, among which were the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (RSTMH) Centenary Scholarship, Malaysian Society of Parasitology and Tropical Medicine Life Membership, Malaysian Society of Parasitology and Tropical Medicine Medal for being an outstanding young scientist, the University of Malaya Excellence Award for outstanding achievement in the category of Excellent Lecturer (for Sciences) and the Top Research Scientists Malaysia (TRSM) Award. In 2018, she was featured as one of the 10 Science Stars of East Asia in Nature.