Latest News Archive

Please select Category, Year, and then Month to display items
Years
2019 2020
Previous Archive
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

Prof. Aldo Stroebel serves on SAYAS
2011-09-23

 

Prof. Aldo Stroebel


Prof. Aldo Stroebel, from our university, has been elected as a Founding Member of the South African Young Academy of Science (SAYAS).
 
He is currently Associate Professor in the Centre for Sustainable Agriculture, Rural Development and Extension, as well as the Director of International Academic Programmes in the Office of the Vice-Chancellor at the university.
 
The Young Academy has as its objectives to represent young scientists in advising the government on science and technology policy and human resource development. In addition, they will prepare the SAYAS to join the Global Young Academy (GYA) to engage with high-level international bodies, including the World Economic Forum. Twenty Founding Members have been elected – ten new members will be elected annually to a maximum of 50.
 
Prof. Stroebel obtained his master’s degree at the University of Ghent, in Belgium, and a PhD at the UFS after a year of graduate coursework at Cornell University in the USA. He completed post-doctoral work at Wageningen University and Research Centre in The Netherlands, where he has been appointed as a Visiting Fellow to their recently-established Centre for Food Security and Sustainable Development. He has published widely, including more than 90 journal articles, book chapters and reports, and co-edited a book published by CTA Wageningen. He has supervised ten master's and doctoral students.  
 
He serves in various capacities: he is a member of the Research and Innovation Strategy Group of Higher Education South Africa (HESA), former member of the SANPAD Board, the President of the International Network of Research Management Societies (INORMS) Conference in 2010, and Vice-President of Research and President-elect of the Southern African Research and Innovation Management Association (SARIMA).
 
Prof. Stroebel has participated in a number of national and international conferences. He was a keynote speaker at the Society of Research Administrators (SRA) in Washington DC in the USA and at the Ministerial Conference on Higher Education in Agriculture in Uganda.
 
He has worked as a consultant and/or advisor for a number of international and multinational organisations, including the Food and Agricultural Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), World Bank, Lux Development, and the World Conservation Union (IUCN), Switzerland.
  

We use cookies to make interactions with our websites and services easy and meaningful. To better understand how they are used, read more about the UFS cookie policy. By continuing to use this site you are giving us your consent to do this.

Accept