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14 May 2019 | Story Thabo Kessah | Photo Tsepo Moeketsi
Prof Ashafa
Prof Ashafa’s research documents plants used by the Basotho in the management of different ailments.

The Phytomedicine and Phytopharmacology Research Programme (PPRP) in the Department of Plant Sciences on the Qwaqwa Campus researches the biological effects of medicinal plants used in the folkloric medicine of the Eastern Free State, particularly to explore the values and contribution of indigenous knowledge systems (IKS) towards broader scientific research. This is according to the programme’s principal investigator and researcher, NRF C2-rated researcher, Professor Anofi Ashafa. 

 “Our research is mainly aimed at documenting plants used by the Basotho in the management of different ailments and to further discover, isolate, and purify active phytoconstituents that are responsible for disease curation or amelioration, thereby assisting in the global promotion of accessible and affordable medication in developing countries,” said Prof Ashafa. 

Since 2012, the PPRP has worked extensively on Basotho medicinal plants (BMP) used as antimicrobials, antioxidants, antidiabetics, antitubercular, anticancer, anthelmintic, and antidiarrheal agents, starting from biological activities up to the  evaluation of the toxicity of these plants for the kidney, liver, and heart functions in order to establish safe dosage parameters. These activities have led to the discovery of four potent antidiabetic biomolecules that are awaiting the processes of patency and commercialisation. Additional outputs include 104 published peer-reviewed articles , 7 postdoctoral fellows, 6 PhDs, 9 master’s, and 16 honours graduates. 

“Our research informs teaching and the development of expertise in ethnobotany, 
phytomedicine, and phytopharmacology in order to contribute to the National Development Plan (NDP) through human capacity development, skills, and knowledge transfer.

The group is also investigating some medicinal plants on the endangered red list of the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI), through micropropagation and field trials as well as proposing conservation strategies to preserve these valuable species.

The PPRP consists of postdoctoral fellows, PhD, master’s, and honours students and research is done in collaboration with several local and international universities as well as the Agricultural Research Council of South Africa. 


News Archive

UFS Dean presents lecture at the University of Cambridge
2009-10-09

 
Here at the main entrance (the "Chimney") of the Jesus College, after the certificate ceremony, are from far left: Prof. Barry Rider, Faculty of Law, University of Cambridge and Hosei Project leader, a group of students (Masters degree in Law) of the Faculty of Law from the Hosei University who received competency certificates after successfully completing the Hosei Summer School Project at the Jesus College, Prof. Henning, and Ms Li-hong Xing, Senior Research Fellow in the Centre for International Documentation on Organised and Economic Crime, Cambridge and Hosei Project Administrator.
Photo: Supplied

Prof. Johan Henning, Dean of the Faculty of Law at the University of the Free State (UFS) and Head of the Centre for Business Law at this faculty, delivered three papers during this year’s Cambridge International Symposium on Economic Crime that took place at Jesus College at the University of Cambridge in Cambridge. The theme of this 27th symposium was: “The enemy within – internal threats to the stability and integrity of financial institutions”.

Prof. Henning’s presentations were about: “Conflicts of interest and duty – a persistent threat”, “Data security and identity fraud” and “The responsibility of management for the prevention and control of financial crime-related risks”.

Over and above the three papers he delivered, Prof. Henning was also part of the secretariat of the symposium and he acted as chairperson at some of the workshops.

The UFS’s Faculty of Law was once again very much involved in the organisation and participation of the symposium. Since 1992, the Centre for Business Law of the Faculty of Law has been one of a few organising institutions of this popular and well-known symposium.

Prior to the symposium, Prof. Henning also acted as guest professor at the week-long Hosei Summer School Project that is presented by the Faculty of Law of the Hosei University (Tokyo Japan) in cooperation with the University of Cambridge. He presented two extended workshops for LLM students on International Business Law and Comparative Company Law.

Prof. Henning is also a Professorial Fellow at the Jesus College and a principal lecturer in International Mercantile Law at the Hosei University Summer School.




 

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