Samira completed her MD at Dalhousie University in 1999 and Internal Medicine training in 2002 at McGill University in Canada. She specialized in Infectious Diseases and Medical Microbiology at the University of Manitoba (2005). She went on to a research fellowship at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York City, in the laboratory of Dr. Peter Palese, Department of Microbiology (2009). Since then she continued to pursue themes of viral transmission and spread.
Early in the pandemic Samira and colleagues isolated the SARS-CoV-2 virus in containment level 3 (CL3) and is the principle source of SARS-CoV-2 to most academic CL3 laboratories across the country. She serves on the Chief Science Advisor of Canada’s COVID-19 Panel, the Implementation Committee of the Canadian COVID-19 Genomics Network (CanCOGeN) Viral Seq project (Genome Canada) and Ontario Genomics’ Steering Committee for the Ontario COVID-19 Genomics Rapid Response Coalition.