CONGRATULATORY MESSAGE TO L’OREAL-UNESCO 2019 INTERNATIONAL RISING TALENT AWARD WINNER- DR. PRISCILLA KOLIBEA MANTE

FELICITATIONS TO L’OREAL-UNESCO 2019 INTERNATIONAL RISING TALENT AWARD WINNER FOR SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA-DR PRISCILLA KOLIBEA MANTE, KWAME NKRUMAH UNIVERSITY OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY (KNUST), KUMASI-GHANA 

On behalf of the Permanent Delegation of Ghana to UNESCO, the entire staff of the Ghana Embassy in France and in my own name, I extend warmest felicitations to Dr. Priscilla Kolibea Mante, for her selection as one of the 15 L’Oreal-UNESCO 2019 International Rising Talents for its annual prestigious Women in Science Awards in the area of research. As the only awardee from Sub-Saharan Africa for the 2019 Awards, Ghana and Africa are proud of her accomplishments in research into neuropharmacology and neuroscience and specifically for her investigations into alternative, plant-based therapeutic options to manage drug-resistant epilepsy and the neglected tropical disease, neurocysticercosis. In 2018, Dr. Mante made Ghana and the continent proud again when she won one of the only two post-doctoral fellowships of the L’Oreal-UNESCO for Women in Science for Sub-Saharan Africa. It is our belief and hope that Dr. Priscilla K. Mante will serve as an icon for younger females in the sciences in Ghana and Africa so as to unearth more talents in research for the benefit of our national and continental development as a whole. Once again, I say “ayekoo”, accept our best wishes for more accomplishments in the future.
Ambassador Anna Bossman
Ambassador and Permanent Delegate of Ghana to UNESCO

Press Release

Ghanaian Female Scientist Receives International Award for Research

Paris, 15 March 2019– Since 1998, the L’Oréal Foundation, in partnership with UNESCO, has worked to improve the representation of women in scientific careers, remaining strong in our conviction that the world needs science, and science needs women. In its first 21 years, the For Women in Science programme supported and raised the profile of 107 laureates and more than 3,000 talented young scientists, both doctoral and post-doctoral candidates, providing research fellowships, allocated annually in 117 countries.

L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science International Awards Ceremony

Five outstanding Laureates, one from each continent, were honoured for their significant contribution to science. These exceptional women were recognised for the excellence of their research in the fields of material science, mathematics and computer science and they will each receive €100,000.  Their achievements were celebrated alongside 15 International Rising Talents who are promising young women scientists from across the world at an awards ceremony on 14th March 2019 at UNESCO’s headquarters in Paris.

Dr Priscilla Mante from Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Ghana was one of 15 International Rising Talents and the only African award recipient. She is also the first recipient of the L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science International Rising Talent Award from her institution.

 

Background of research

Expanding access to affordable, high quality medical care in Africa is a major focus for sustainable development. Specialising in neuropharmacology and neuroscience, Dr. Priscilla Kolibea Mante is researching alternative, plant-based therapeutic options to manage drug-resistant epilepsy and the neglected tropical disease, neurocysticercosis.

She is currently exploring the anticonvulsant activity of the plant alkaloid cryptolepine and its solid-lipid nanoparticles in the management of neurocysticercosis-induced epilepsy. By identifying a way to help cryptolepine permeate more efficiently into the central nervous system, the risk of convulsion should be reduced, helping the patient to manage their condition as effectively as possible. “It’s very rewarding to know that my research could significantly alter complicated structures like the brain and positively affect people’s lives”, she says.

Dr. Priscilla Kolibea Mante believes the biggest challenge for women in science is managing negative perceptions of ambition in women and overcoming gender stereotypes. Having faith in the future, she is convinced that her generation has been fortunate to receive strong support, and believe women can tap into that and spearhead their careers to higher levels. “The world will make room for us”, she says. “The more women push for senior roles, the harder it will be to ignore them.” The expert guidance of both men and women throughout her career has been so important that Dr. Priscilla Kolibea Mante now considers herself a “champion” of mentorship, regularly supporting younger scientists in pursuing their dreams. She concludes: “Sometimes it’s important to hold your mentee’s hand and guide them towards opportunities they never knew existed.”

In 2018, Dr Mante received one of two L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science Sub-Saharan Africa post-doctoral fellowships.  The programme recognised 14 fellows – 12 doctoral and 2 post-doctoral – from five countries in sub-Saharan Africa (Ghana, Mauritius, Kenya, South Africa and Nigeria). They were selected for the scientific excellence of their work from more than 480 applicants, by a jury of independent experts.

Press contact

Helen Da Fonseca

Email – helen.dafonseca@loreal.com

Contact number – +27 11 286 0742

   

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