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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

Support our FNB Shimlas as they play against the NWU Pukke
2011-02-16

 
Jamba Olengu in action.
Photo: Van Zyl Naudè

On Monday, 7 March 2011 Steinhoff International will be presenting the last Varsity Cup match for the season on Xerox Shimla Park, as the FNB Shimlas take on the NWU Pukke. Do not miss this mini intervarsity! The Shimlas need your support.

The match, which starts at 19:00, will be preceded by matches between the FNB UFS U.19 vs. the NWU u.19 (15:00), and the FNB UFS u.21 vs. the NWU u.21 (16:30). So, take your seat early and also watch as, for the first time during a Varsity Cup match in Bloemfontein, parachuters will land on Xerox Shimla Park. Look out for this sight between 18:30 and 19:00.
 
Let us arrive in our numbers and make it a record breaking crowd to support our FNB Shimlas. Big prizes are once again at stake. Carling Black Label is giving away two Apple iPods. Tickets will be sold at the gate and will put you in the draw for one of these incredible prizes.
 
Campus residences and associations who rocks up in the biggest numbers, is the most visible and who is making the loudest noise stand a chance to win a six month DSTV subscription.
 
Tickets will be sold for R10, fifty percent less than the normal price.

The normal price is R20 per ticket, but a limited number of tickets will be sold at R10 per ticket for students who do not have a royal blue supporter shirt on. These tickets are available from the south ticket office at Xerox Shimla Park. They will be sold on a “first come first served” basis. Once the tickets have been sold out, the normal price of R20 would apply once again. So be at the field early and save R10 on your ticket.

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