Dr Lester M.Davids is a molecular cell biologist in the Department of Human Biology.
He graduated from the University of Cape Town with a PhD in 2003 and worked as a postdoctoral fellow in the human biology department until 2007 under a SA Medical Research Council Career Award, studying melanocyte skin precursors and their role in underlying skin disorders such as vitiligo, psoriasis and acne. In 2008, he was appointed as a lecturer in the department, which was upgraded to a senior lecturer status in 2010.
He currently heads up the Redox laboratory studying aspects of melanoma research in relation to using photodynamic therapy as adjunctive therapy.
His other lab interests revolve around the testing of antioxidants in skin cells as well as studying aspects of molecular anthropology such as the effect of skin lighteners on human skin cells. His lab has published consistently over the last 4 years and he has co-edited a special edition in the Journal for Dermatological Research for Pigment Cells. International collaborators hail from the USA and Europe. He has recently been awarded a Y scientific rating through the National Research Foundation and been granted a laser for his photodynamic therapy work from the Centre for Industrial and Scientific Research, National Laser Centre. His personal interests include playing indoor and outdoor cricket and squash.