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Ilham Abuljadayel

ABULJADAYEL, Ilham, Saudi Arabian immunologist. After  graduation from King’s College in London, Ilham went back to work in her native country. In the late 1990s she was experimenting with white blood cells and a method of inactivating them using an antibody. One of the ingredients of the reaction was accidentally omitted and she got some remarkable results. The adult cells reverted to stem cells. This process may be defined as retrodifferentiation. The prospect exists of treating various diseases by creating large numbers of stem cells from their own blood. These would be healthy cells so the number of diseased cells would rapidly become a minority. The process is surprising and there may be any number of explanations for it. But the technical process has been patented, after a research consultancy verified the experimental results. Her husband has created a Dublin based company called Tristem to exploit the discovery with major biotechnology companies. Recently, Ilham has worked in the Dept of Physiology at Cambridge whilst convincing the scientific world about her invention.

Immunologist Inventor

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