Egyptian women working in science and medicine have been excelling in knowledge, dedication and innovation for decades, despite the male-dominated reality of the two fields and the obstacles that ensures.
These incredible Egyptian women from past and present, in addition to breaking barriers and shattering stereotypes, have made contributions to their fields that are not only awe-inspiring, but inspiring, period.
1. Sameera Moussa
A pioneer in nuclear physics, Moussa not only discovered how to split the atoms of cheap metals such as copper, she dedicated her nuclear research to finding a way to make nuclear technology safe and affordable so it can be used in medical treatment.
She organized the Atomic Energy for Peace Conference and spent her life advocating for the peaceful use of nuclear potential.
2. Nagwa Abd El-Meguid
An internationally-renowned genetic scientist whose award-winning research discovered several genetic mutations, El-Meguid was one of the first researchers in Egypt to establish the relationship between the occurrence of genetic disorders and the prevalence of inter-family marriages.
The first Arab laureate of the L'Oreal UNESCO Award for Women in Science, she also pioneered the use of early intervention in specialized clinics in Egypt for the treatment of children with genetic disorders.
3. Hilana Sedarous
Taking the lead for Egyptian women in medicine, Sedarous was the first Egyptian woman to become a doctor. She studied in London and came back to Egypt to work at the Kitchener Hospital in Cairo, later opening a private clinic specializing in obstetrics and gynecology.
4. Kamilia Abd El-Fattah
A renowned psychologist who was chosen as woman of the year in Who's Who UK encyclopaedia 1997 and Cambridge University, Abd El-Fattah pioneered child psychology in Egypt. She established and headed some of the country's first educational institutes for child studies.
5. Nashwa El-Bendary
A computer scientist who was awarded the L'Oreal UNESCO Fellowship for Women in Science, El-Bendary has done award-winning research about the effects of climate change on agriculture.
She has been working on a project that combines computational technology, tunnel farming and crop production systems to provide an innovative method for determining the best harvest time. El-Bendary is working on developing a smart solution for increasing agricultural production and protecting it from climate change effects.
6. Fawzia Fahim
A biochemist and environmental biologist who made significant improvements to occupational health and pollution issues in Egypt, Fahim is renowned for her research about the anti-tumoral effects of snake venom and iodoacetate. She lectured on biochemistry in many Egyptian universities for years and authored and co-authored more than 80 scientific papers.
7. Mona Mostafa Mohamed
A biologist who was admitted to the US State Department’s 2012 Women in Science Hall of Fame for the Middle East and North Africa, Mohamed has done groundbreaking research about inflammatory breast cancer and finding new treatments for it.
She founded Cairo University's Cancer Biology Laboratory after winning the 2005 Avon Foundation International Scholar Award in Breast Cancer Research.
8. Hend El-Sherbini
A renowned clinical pathologist and immunologist, El-Sherbini is the CEO of Egypt's largest medical diagnostics company Integrated Diagnostics Holdings, which was formed by merging Al-Mokhatabar and Al-Borg Laboratories, where Sherbini was also CEO before the merger.
Under El-Sherbini's leadership, IDH provides more than 1,000 diagnostic services, including pathology and molecular diagnostics, genetics testing and basic radiology to patients and other laboratories operating in more than 290 branches and four central labs across the Middle East.