University of Pretoria Diabetes Research Centre

"Pioneering transdisciplinary diabetes research in Africa"


The University of Pretoria Diabetes Research Centre is an initiative which aims to champion and promote optimal diabetes prevention and control at all levels of care through research, innovation and advocacy. Established in November 2020, the UP Diabetes Research Centre endeavours to deliver top quality scientific contributions as practical solutions to problems of diabetes prevention and control at national and regional level.

The UP Diabetes Research Centre is aligned to the Department of Health National Strategic Plan for the prevention and control of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) with interventions at four levels: community, primary healthcare, hospital (district and regional), and tertiary (diabetes clinics). The UP Diabetes Research Centre supports the 90-60-50 cascade for diabetes and hypertension to improve early detection and treatment.

The UP Diabetes Research Centre was established in December 2020 as an entity following the collaborative work existing between various Schools and Departments within the Faculty of Health Sciences.

We have a strong focus on translational research and a person-centred approach to improved diabetes care and outcomes, particulary in primary care and in communities.

We are excited about using transdisciplinary innovative research and collaborate with partners and statekeholders to improve the lives of people living with diabetes and beyond.


Our vision is to be a nationally and internationally recognised leader in diabetes translational research, ultimately aspiring to better lives of people living with diabetes



The Centre strives to:

  • Create an environment that enables and supports world-class transdisciplinary research in diabetes collaborating with various other Departments, Faculties and Institutions.

  • Catalyse and promote diabetes research and innovations through multidisciplinary collaborations and strategic partnerships.

  • Translate new knowledge into improved diabetes care, management, and prevention.

  • Provide practical and up-to-date training for the management of diabetes to healthcare professionals.

  • Advocate for sustainable evidence-based, culturally sensitive, and person-centred care for people with diabetes.


More information on Diabetes

Have a look at our Resources for for up-to-date information on Diabetes, Healthy Food Guide and Living with Diabetes - Starting Insulin

Questions about Diabetes?


Important notices and announcements

PhD position at the University of Pretoria Diabetes Research Centre

Type 1 diabetes is growing fast. According to the Type 1 Diabetes Index, for every two people living with type 1 diabetes a third person is missing who should still be alive. South Africa is among some of the very populous nations in sub-Saharan Africa, without data for under 20 year old for type 1 diabetes. The country data are extrapolated from data from Tanzania, with the latest estimates showing that there are 4,526 South African children and adolescents <20 years with type 1 diabetes. Due to the severe lack of data, the need for incidence and prevalence data on type 1 diabetes within South Africa is urgent. Accurate data on type 1 diabetes can allow advocacy efforts to be made for improved service delivery for people living with type 1 diabetes.

The successful applicant will receive 3-year PhD training starting in January - February 2023. The PhD candidate, with the guidance of his/her supervisors, will be able to choose from a variety of modules including chronic disease epidemiology, biostatistics, epidemiology, scientific writing to develop his/her skills and competencies.

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