Dr. Otto Koekemoer

Otto Koekemoer obtained a PhD in Biochemistry from the Potchefstroom University (NWU) in 2004 specialising in molecular virology. Most of his postgraduate researched focussed on the molecular aspects of vaccine and diagnostic method development for several arboviruses of veterinary importance. He joined the Onderstepoort Veterinary Institute in 1996 and worked on the early development of molecular diagnostic assays for the identification and serotyping of African horsesickness viruses (AHSV), culminating in the first publication of a real-time RT-PCR test for the distinction of the nine AHSV serotypes, in 2008. His research group also published papers on the genetic characterisation of AHSV and the role of mutations and recombination in the evolution of the virus and its implications in vaccine development. He is currently employed as a specialist researcher in virology at Onderstepoort Biological Products where he is involved in several projects aiming to improve on and develop new viral vaccines.