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US-Based Kenyan Researcher Makes History as First African to be Granted More than 100 Patents by US Patent and Trade Office

A leading US-based Kenyan scientist has achieved a major milestone, becoming the first African to be granted over 100 patents by the US Patents and Trade Office.

Dr F. George Njoroge, a senior research fellow at global pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly, achieved the fete with the discovery of novel molecules used to treat viral infections.

Dr Njoroge’s research area focuses on drug discovery and development. While working at Merck Research Laboratories, his research led to the discovery of Victrelis, the first oral Hepatitis C drug. Victrelis was approved by the FDA in 2011 and is currently on sale in more than 45 countries worldwide, with over $1 billion in sales. The discovery won him a coveted "2012 Hero of Chemistry" honor by American Chemical Society, the world’s largest scientific society.

Dr Njoroge holds a He holds a PhD in Organic Chemistry from Case Western Reserve University in Ohio. He also holds a masters degree in Chemistry from the same university and a Bachelor’s degree from Nairobi University. He completed his ‘A’ levels at Thika High School in 1975. He was also awarded an honorary Doctor of Pharmacy degree by Mt Kenya University of 2014.

In addition to the more than 100 patents, Dr Njoroge has authored and co-authored over 120 scientific publications.

Saying Kenya and Africa in general lags behind in scientific research, Dr Njoroge urges Kenyan universities to ensure they develop technologically qualified graduates. “We should change the emphasis of university education and put more weight on research rather than just concentrating on informational based teaching.  The quality of education should be emphasized and government agencies should make sure that this is not compromised what so ever,” Dr Njoroge tells Mwakilishi.com.  He also challenges Kenyan venture capitalists to support start-up biotechnology companies, saying such investment will not only lead to discovering remedies for diseases that have greatly afflicted human suffering such as AIDS and malaria, but will also lead to innovations that can spur industrialization and bring great financial and economical benefits to the country.

RELATED: Kenyan Researcher In The US At The Center Of Medical Discovery

A list of Dr Njoroge's patents can be found at the US Patents Database.

Comments

Mugo Gachucha

Mon, 01/30/2017 - 21:28

Dr. Njoroge, kudos to your exemplary work in alleviating suffering for all mankind; Your work is world renowned and deserves recognition; We will forever remain grateful for your wonderful achievements. Aluta continua!

Caroline and D…

Tue, 01/31/2017 - 00:34

Congratulations on all your achievements.
What impresses me the most is how humble you have remained despite your success. You are a role model to many and you have created a beautiful family. God bless you.

ritimbo13

Tue, 01/31/2017 - 04:42

First, of all congratulations u have defied all the odds to be the person u are today. Secondly I would like to quote you what you said " that you challenge the venture capitalist to support our local brain " There are many millionaires in Kenya with no new ideas and then we got people with very good ideas which need supported .When this venture capitalists invest their money it is a win-win strategy .obviously they are not gonna invest without a thorough review of the ideas and whether they will work or not. And as a result of their investment more Kenyans will be employed and in return this will boost the economy. Finally Dr. Njoroge if u cannot come home because you very busy at least have a direct contact with our local universities and have your ideas implemented , I am pretty sure they will listen to you having come this far . I wish well.

Gertrude Njenga

Tue, 01/31/2017 - 18:11

Congratulations Mr.Njoroge,may God continue using you in that direction, l know this must be God.All the glory and honor to the Lord.

Benson Muhuthia

Tue, 01/31/2017 - 21:28

Dr. Njoroge, you have done mankind good. Your brilliance in research and science is and will forever be appreciated by millions that don't even know your name. Congratulations in all your achievements and this Awesome accolade that you rightfully earned.
May you continue to soar to even greater heights.

EDWARD KIMANI

Wed, 02/01/2017 - 08:29

Congratulations Doctor Njoroge for making Kenya proud.We Kenyan,your fellow brothers,are proud of you.Congratulations once again.Thank you.

Victor Ochieng

Wed, 02/01/2017 - 11:22

Congratulations Dr.Njoroge.There are so many good brains in Kenya.I have friends who graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Biochemistry but they end up becoming med reps instead of becoming researchers.There are no jobs in biotech sector in Kenya so we end up doing things we are not passionate about and all that knowledge acquired ends up getting lost.Such opportunities are available in Western countries.Education is also expensive and not everyone can afford the finances for studies overseas.No one is willing to invest in those brains and there are no programmes that have been started to help people like us.I myself graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Biochemistry but finding a job in the biotech sector was impossible in Kenya.I ended up in a material testing laboratory for construction in the middle East where the pay is very little and at some point I get salary cut from my employer.No medical cover.If you get sick there is no sick leave your salary ends up being deducted.In the process you question why you took Science as course a waste of time and money and some of the knowledge acquired keeps disappearing because your interest is lost.I had dream of helping Africa but all that was crushed because there were no opportunitiesI don't mean to be negative but that is the reality of life.What you have achieved is remarkable it can create opportunities for many but in we need people like you in Africa.If we could just start with a Biotech hub like the way we have ICT hubs in Kenya then that would be a good start towards creating opportunities as well as tackling the problems like HIV/AIDS,Cancer and malaria.

Thank you Victor for candidly expressing the way it is in our motherland in regard to science engagement. I hear you and will do my best to see that I plant a seed of biotechnology entrepreneurship that will cater for young scientists like you in the way of nurturing them to become productive to our society. Time has come when Africa has to utilize its great minds in commercialization of science. Please keep engaged and you will soon see what I will try to do in this area in the few years. Again, thank you for pouring your heart in expressing on this worthy cause.

Francis Gachara

Thu, 02/02/2017 - 10:10

Congraturation,Dr Njoroge....You have done an honourable and useful piece of work your for country and human kind.You have set a unique example for to young and old scholars...Each of should endever to make a contribution to our communities and himan kind.That is a humble way of living the world better than we found it ...Gof bless you.

Wambui Njoroge

Thu, 02/02/2017 - 18:29

Congratulations Dr. Njoroge for leading and leaving a trace where others will follow.
Thank you for challenging others to focus more on research. You make all of us proud of your accomplishments at home and in USA.

Jesse Muchai

Fri, 02/03/2017 - 00:04

Dr. Njoroge- Congratulations sir! Your contribution in the pharmaceutical science and your mark in history will outlive you! One hundred patents; this is a major milestone and great inspiration. Yes, it can be done! Thank you for your humility and willingness to mentor others irrespective of their backgrounds. Proud of you sir.

Many congratulations Dr. Njoroge for the many achievements you have accomplished. They give us hope and interest in continuing pursuing knowledge and more.

May God bless you as you continue to work hard to make the world a better place.

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