Three L'Oreal Fellowships awarded to UP researchers

Posted on December 08, 2015

Science knows no boundaries, and that includes gender as well as age. African women have once again displayed inventiveness and excellence when it comes to the sciences.

One staff member and two PhD students from the University of Pretoria confirmed these sentiments by winning three of the twelve fellowships awarded by the 2015 L’Oréal-UNESCO for Women in Science Sub-Saharan Africa 2015 programme.

Dr Jandeli Niemand, a researcher in the NRF/DST South African Research Chair in Sustainable Malaria Control won a post-doctoral fellowship  worth €10 000, while Danielle Twilley (Medicinal Plant Science) and Olubokola Adenubi (Phytomedicine) were awarded doctoral fellowships worth €5 000 each.

Dr Niemand received the L’Oreal fellowship for her research on the membrane transport in the sexual transmissible stage of Plasmodum Falciparum parasites.

Danielle is a PhD student in the Integrated Department of Plant and Soil Science and her doctoral research (under supervision of Prof Namrita Lall) focuses on medicinal plants traditionally used in Southern Africa for the treatment of skin diseases and cancer, selected on the basis of their phytochemistry.

Olubokola is a PhD student in the Faculty of Veterinary Science and her research focuses on the tick repellent and acaricide, as well as other potential biological activities of seventeen plant species. She is doing her PhD under the supervision of Dr Vinny Naidoo in the Department of Phytomedicine.

Through the substantial diversity of their research, this year’s Sub-Saharan African Fellows highlight the changing face of scientific research and the new disciplines that are continually emerging, forging the next generation of For Women in Science fellows. These young researchers share the thrill of curiosity and discovery, and believe strongly that science can change the world.

Sandeep Rai, Managing Director of L’Oréal South Africa remarked: “For the last 17 years, with the For Women in Science program, we have been fighting to advance the cause of women scientists worldwide. Much has been achieved: more than 2 000 women have been recognised worldwide, the program has gained recognition from the international scientific community, a springboard to enable women to go further and rise to greater heights. Science is part of our DNA and we are really proud of all the women who continue to make a difference in Africa through our programme.”


- Author Martie Meyer

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