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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

Bullying in schools discussed at inaugural lecture
2005-05-24

Prof Corene de Wet, from the Department of Comparative Education and Education Management at the University of the Free State (UFS), will deliver her inaugural lecture on Wednesday 1 June 2005 at 19:00 in the CR Swart Auditorium on campus.  

The topic of the lecture is Bullying in schools:  Everyone’s problem.

Prof de Wet studied at the Universities of Potchefstroom and the Free State. Her career began in 1975 as a teacher at the Ermelo High School.  After a period as a History and Afrikaans teacher at various secondary schools in the Free State, she was appointed as senior lecturer at the UFS in 1992, and thereafter as Associate Professor (2002) and Professor (July 2004).

In her academic career of 14 years, Prof de Wet has authored/co-authored 42 publications, of which 32 articles have been published in accredited scientific journals. She has presented five international and 12 national conference papers. She was honoured for academic excellence (1984, UFS) and research excellence (2004, UFS). Her research focuses on crime in education, as well as cultural diversity as an important educational issue. So far 17 M Ed and two Ph D students graduated under her supervision.

Prof de Wet is assistant editor of Acta Academica and SA-eDUC Electronic Journal. She is a member of the Suid-Afrikaanse Akademie vir Wetenskap en Kuns, the Education Association of South Africa, the Southern African Comparative and History of Education Society and the International Cultural Research Network.

For any enquiries, please contact Ms Joan Nel at (051) 401-9301.

MEDIA RELEASE

Issued by:  Lacea Loader
   Media Representative
   Tel:  (051) 401-2584
   Cell:  083 645 2454
   E-mail:  loaderl.stg@mail.uovs.ac.za

24 May 2005
 

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