The O.R. Tambo Africa Research Chairs Initiative (ORTARChI) has selected the initiative’s first ten host institutions and individual research chairholders. This initiative builds on the work of Oliver Tambo, a prominent South African and pan-Africanist with a science education background, who believed in creating change through education and in cooperation and solidarity among African nations.
A North-West University (NWU) graduate is bringing together age-old plant knowledge and the latest nanotechnology to make the most of medicinal plant extracts.
According to a United States National Nanotechnology Initiative, nanotechnology is currently revolutionising the technology and industrial sectors. These include information technology, homeland security, medicine, transportation, energy, food safety and environmental science, among many others.
MSc graduate Pule Silent Seboletswe recently conducted research into how nanotechnology can help in finding solutions for problems related to the use of natural products for therapeutic purposes.
Our oceans are choking on plastic debris. In fact, marine plastic debris is one of the most pressing environmental concerns facing the world today, with devastating effects for both humans and the environment.
Prof Henk Bouwman, from the North-West University’s (NWU’s) Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, says that this is by no means an easy question to answer because of gaps in the available data.
Carina explains their concern that earlier quantitative assumptions used in various assessments of marine plastic debris may not have been accurate, and therefore resulted in an over-estimation of the amount of plastic that enters the South African marine environment
The social and economic impact of neuromuscular diseases (NMDs) is staggering. These diseases, which include motor neuron disease and muscular dystrophies, can cause premature death or lifelong disability and are believed to affect one in every 400 people – meaning about 20 million children and adults across the globe.
There is hope on the international front, however. Precise genetic diagnoses, gene discoveries and new therapies are having a positive impact on patient care and well-being in developed countries.
This is not yet the case in developing countries with under-studied populations such as South Africa, where more research is desperately needed to develop effective genetic diagnoses and treatments for rare inherited disorders such as NMDs.
This is where the North-West University (NWU) is playing an important role, both as partner in an international collaborative study and as coordinator of the core South African team that will investigate NMD in the region.