It will take the harnessing of big data in the medical field to realise the promise of personalised medicine
Zinhle Mncube has a dream. Mncube’s dream is that all 55 million South Africans will receive medical care in which treatment is customized for an individual patient. The achievement of her dream lies in the outcomes of her current research where she is investigating the nature, limits, and prospects of personalized medicine.
Personalized medicine will represent an evolution from the current one-size-fits-all approach in medicine, towards a more targeted treatment and care for individual patients according to, in part, their genome structure. It will take the harnessing of big data in medicine to realize the promise of personalized medicine. Mncube hopes that her research will help clarify conceptual confusions around personalized medicine. She hopes to provide critical analysis of the prospects PM in South Africa, considering the country’s burden of disease and infrastructure problems.
She graduated with a BA Journalism in 2012, a BA Honours in Philosophy the following year and an MA in Philosophy in 2016 from the University of Johannesburg. Mncube is reading for a Ph.D. in History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Cambridge, with a focus on the philosophy of medicine. She is also a lecturer in the Department of Philosophy at UJ and a founding member of the African Centre for Epistemology and Philosophy of Science at the university.
Mncube is also a past winner of the prestigious British Society for the Philosophy of Science doctoral studentship. She was a winner of UJ’s 2016 Chancellor’s medal for the most meritorious study in the Faculty of Humanities. She has also been awarded numerous academic scholarships by UJ and the NRF throughout her academic career. She has published papers on the biological basis of race, a causal construal of heritability estimates, and scientific racism. She has presented her research at Cambridge, Harvard, Redlands, Wageningen, Johannesburg, Rhodes, Queen Mary (London), and at the Philosophy of Science Association conferences in Seattle and Atlanta in the US.