CARPS student

Florence Munguti

Florence Munguti (Kenyan) is currently the Officer-In-Charge of KEPHIS-Plant Quarantine & Bio-security station. She holds a Master of Science degree in Molecular Biology & Bioinformatics and a Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry. She is a beneficiary of BecA-ILRI African Biosciences challenge fund Fellowship program (ABCF) where she carried out her MSc Research on utilization of next generation sequencing in identification of woodiness disease causal viruses in passion fruit. Out of her research work she was able to develop quick diagnostic protocol based on Loop Mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) for use in passion fruit nursery certification. The activities she coordinates include plant pest and disease diagnostics, coordination of quarantine imports including participation in Pest Risk Analysis and approval and issuance of plant import permits. She has contributed to the ISO 17025 accreditation of the Plant Quarantine & Biosecurity laboratories at KEPHIS and has as well participated in review of diagnostic protocols at regional Plant Protection Convention. She is a PhD student on the cassava project (RU-2018-CARP+-04), where her research will focus on determining the occurrence and distribution of Cassava Brownstreak Disease (CBSD) in the coastal region of Kenya with a case study of Kilifi and Taita Taveta counties. She will also be focusing on determination of the molecular diversity of the viruses causing Cassava Brown streak Disease as well as its vectors. She will also validate the diagnostic protocols for detection of this disease in support of the cassava seed systems to ensure that farmers get clean planting materials. This will lead to improved cassava productivity and hence contribute to solving food insecurity in the region. She has interests in increased capacity in diagnostics of emerging diseases especially viral diseases, and understanding the role of vectors in the transmission of the diseases to support phytosanitary decision making and seed systems

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