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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

Odeion: Fun concert
2007-09-21

Fun concert!
4 October 2007
Odeion
19:30

The Department of Music presents a fun concert on Thursday, 4 October 2007, 19:30 in the Odeion. After several requests and excellent feedback from our concert goers, the Department has decided to make these lighter concerts a regular event and is presenting this one for FREE! Besides the following items, we have a lot of surprises in store.

Three pieces for cello and piano:
Boccherini: Rondo
Gluck: Melody
Popper: Tarentella
Michael Haller (cello), Albie van Schalkwyk (piano)

Francis Poulenc: Babar the elephant
Hanna van Niekerk (narrator), Albie van Schalkwyk (piano)

Ludwig van Beethoven: Sonata for violin and piano, Op. 24 (“Spring Sonata”)
John Wille (violin), Nicol Viljoen (piano)

Scott Joplin: Three Piano Rags: Maple Leaf Rag, Magnetic Rag & Easy Winners
Albie van Schalkwyk & Nicol Viljoen (pianos)

Sergei Rachmaninoff: Waltz & Romance for piano, six hands
Anchen Froneman, Petro Engelbrecht, Ronella van Rensburg (piano)

Noel Stockton and Nicol Viljoen at two pianos!

Bookings:
Book your free ticket now at 051 - 401 2504. Only 372 seats available!
 

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