PROF DATIN PADUKA DR AINI IDERIS, FASc, FIAS, FMCVS, FMSADVM, MVSc, PhD
Professor Dr. Aini graduated with the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) degree in 1979 from Universiti Pertanian Malaysia - UPM (currently, Universiti Putra Malaysia). She was awarded the degree of Master of Veterinary Science (VSC) in the field of Avian Medicine from the University of Liverpool, United Kingdom (1981) and the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree from UPM (1989) in the same field. She did her postdoctoral training at the University of California, Davis, USA (1990-1992) and at Cornell University, USA (1993), where she was involved in the investigation of the molecular pathogenesis of avian diseases.
Professor Dr. Aini is a renowned scientist in the field of research related to disease control and productions of vaccines for poultry. She headed the avian medical research programme and assumed the responsibility as head of the Top-Down National Animal Biotechnology Project. Her research led to the commercialisation of the Newcastle disease vaccine (DV4-UPM) in 1995 and the fowl pox tissue culture vaccine in 1996. In 2005, her research team successfully commercialised another important vaccine for poultry, the infectious bursal disease vaccine. Her research team has also developed several instant diagnostic kits to detect avian influenza (bird flu) which is a zoonotic disease, Newcastle disease and Mycoplasmosis. Currently, her team is developing halal vaccines using different carriers in a bioreactor. They are also in the midst of developing DNA vaccines. She is also a recipient of various research grants from several ministries and industries in the country as well as foreign agencies.
As a distinguished scientist, she was appointed as a Fellow at the Academy of Sciences Malaysia (FASc). In addition, she is the Founding Fellow of the Malaysian College of Veterinary Specialists (FMCVS) and a Fellow of the Malaysian Scientific Association (FMSA). In October 2011, she was elected as a Fellow of the Islamic World Academy of Sciences (FIAS), making her one of the eight female Fellows out of the 100 Fellows from more than 50 OIC countries. In 2013, she received another recognition when she was appointed a member of the Hall of Honour of the World Veterinary Poultry Association for her contributions and leadership to the community of the developing countries in research and development of avian health. She was among 52 members of leading experts from around the world.
She is also an active member of the Academy of Sciences Council and College of Veterinary Specialists Council (CVS), a member of the Governance Board, International Medical University (IMU), International Medical College (IMC) and a Board Member of Yayasan Putra Business School. She is also actively involved in social services, being the Board of Directors of the Institute of Cancer Research Malaysia (MCRI) and Executive Member of the National Cancer Council (MAKNA). In 2015, she was appointed as a judge for three prestigious international awards, namely the Mustafa Prize Award (for leading scientists of the OIC countries), World Veterinary Poultry Association Innovation in Vaccination Award and Loreal Fellowship Award.
In 2011, Professor Dr. Aini received the National Academic Award (AAN) 2010 for the Innovation and Product Commercialisation Award Category, following her successful innovation and commercialisation of the Newcastle disease (ND V4-UPM) vaccines. The vaccine is the first product to be commercialised as a result of research carried out in institutions of higher learning, and it has been marketed in more than 10 countries. AAN is the highest achievement award given to academics in Malaysia. In 2013, she was selected as one of the Top Research Scientists (TRSM) and nominated as one of the top 10 researchers for the National Innovation Award 2012. She received the UPM Distinguished Alumni Award in 2012. Other research awards that Professor Dr. Aini received are the Vice-Chancellor Fellowship Award— Outstanding Researcher category (2007), Bioscience Research Excellence Award (2007) and Commercialisation Award (2008). Her research group had also won the Innovation Award in Public and Private Sector Research (2008) in which she was a co-researcher.
Professor Dr. Aini has extensive administrative experience other than in the field of teaching and learning. She was the Acting Head of the Department of Veterinary Clinical Studies in 1989 and 1990, the Chairman of the Veterinary Teaching Hospital in 1992-1998, Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, from 1992 to 2001 (9 years), the Dean of the Graduate School from May 2001 until November 2008 (8 years) and Chairman of the Deans of Graduate Public Institutions of Higher Learning Council, Malaysia, 2005-2008.
She is also the Chairman/ member of various committees at the Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia (MOHE), Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI) and Ministry of Agriculture and Agro-based Industry (MOA), in addition to being the Coordinator of the Swiftlet Centre of Excellence, under the Ministry of Agriculture and Agro-based Industry.
She was the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic and International) of Universiti Putra Malaysia from December 2008 to 2013 and was Chairman of Deputy Vice-Chancellors’ Committee/Rector (Academic and International) during that period.
In October 2015, she was appointed Director of Corporate Strategy & Communications Office (CoSComm), Universiti Putra Malaysia until her appointment as the 8th Vice-Chancellor of UPM on 1 January, 2016.