Elijah Miinda Ateka
Ateka is Professor of Plant Virology at Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture (JKUAT) and Technology where he studies viruses that affect sweet potato and cassava crops. He obtained his bachelor’s in agriculture and PhD in molecular virology at the University of Nairobi in Kenya. Ateka has worked on chemotherapy and thermotherapy trials to eliminate the Cassava mosaic virus. He was also involved in establishing a diagnostic laboratory and greenhouse facility to study viruses that affect cassava at JKUAT in 2016. He strongly collaborates with Laura Boykin, a researcher based in Australia, and one of their projects involved developing portable DNA sequencers or nanopores to enable farmers diagnose cassava diseases early. Ateke is currently working on a project to breed a new variety of cassava that is more resilient to extreme conditions brought by climate change.