News

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COVID-19: Are men the weaker sex?

Along with Italian colleagues, Prof Robert Millar published a paper in the journal Neuroendocrinology about the differences between men and women in terms of COVID-19 outcomes, focusing on the role that sex hormones play on the severity and outcome of the infection and the complex interplay of sex with the ACE2 and TMPRSS2 enzymes, and inflammatory and immune systems.

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UP produces first-of-its-kind solution to encourage safe listening to prevent hearing loss

In the first study of its kind, researchers at the University of Pretoria (UP) have made headway in understanding the accuracy and reliability of sound-level monitoring earphones and the effect of smartphone feedback, as an intervention to encourage safe listening use among young people.

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Researcher Profile: Professor Robert Millar

Professor Robert (Bob) Millar is the Director of the Centre for Neuroendocrinology at the University of Pretoria (UP). He is also a senior research fellow at the Universities of Cape Town (UCT) and Edinburgh, and Emeritus Professor at the University of St Andrews in Scotland. He was born in South Africa and grew up in Zimbabwe.

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Research by UP-led team reveals eating habits of black holes

Research by an international team of scientists led by the University of Pretoria’s (UP) Dr Jack Radcliffe has clarified the eating habits of massive black holes.

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South African case study sheds light on how vaccine manufacturing can be developed

The uneven availability of COVID-19 vaccines has become an increasingly urgent and vexatious issue. But managing the problem of what’s been labelled “vaccine nationalism” is proving a hard nut to crack.

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Christof Heyns: South African scholar who left his mark on the world’s human rights systems

The South African academic Professor Christof Heyns, who has died at the age of 62, was a world-renowned human rights advocate and academic. He was a thoughtful scholar of both the African and UN human rights systems, and an incredibly popular teacher and activist.

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UP part of global team that reveals behaviour of magnetic fields around black holes

The Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) collaboration – which produced the first-ever image of a black hole and of which the University of Pretoria (UP) is an associate institute – has revealed a new view of the massive object at the centre of the M87 galaxy: what it looks like in polarised light.

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UP expert details the true, terrifying nature of lightning

There is a common misconception that most lightning victims are struck directly by a “bolt” of lightning from the sky. But according to Professor Ryan Blumenthal, a senior specialist forensic pathologist at the University of Pretoria, less than 5% of victims are struck by the lightning flash itself – most lighting-related deaths and injuries occur as a result of other lightning attachment mechanisms.

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Researcher profile: UP ‘lightning pathologist’ Prof Ryan Blumenthal

University of Pretoria (UP) forensic pathologist Professor Ryan Blumenthal is a senior specialist and lecturer in the Department of Forensic Medicine and an expert on electrothermal injuries. Many might recognise him from the eight-part documentary series Lightning Pathologist, which recently aired on DStv, reaching more than two million viewers.

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UP vets’ partial knee replacement surgery on Theophylline the cat another first for South Africa

After Theophylline fractured her leg in a fall, determined UP vets used a complex surgery that has never been performed in SA before to ensure that the kitten’s leg is saved from amputation.

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NEW STUDY: Welfare and survival of Africa’s arid mammals under threat of climate change

Dr Ned Snelling, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Anatomy and Physiology and Prof Leith Meyer, Director of the Centre for Veterinary Wildlife Studies, both from the Faculty of Veterinary Science have just published a new study on the welfare and survival of Africa’s arid-dwelling mammals under the threat of climate change.

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Tasty, healthy and African: UP plays its part in international project to promote local crops and develop new food products

UP is representing South Africa in a 20-partner African and European consortium to boost food security and nutrition in Africa.

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University of Pretoria researchers receive prestigious grants for cutting-edge cancer research

UP’s Prof Robert Millar and Dr Iman van den Bout have received funding to support their research into solutions for the diagnosis and treatment of prostate cancer and breast cancer.

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Researcher Profile: Prof Nigel Bennett and Dr Daniel Hart

Prof Nigel Bennett and Dr Daniel Hart were part of an international team whose research into African mole-rats was not only published in the distinguished journal Science but made the cover.

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Ground-breaking study reveals colonies of mole-rats communicate with each other in their own dialect

A study by a team of scientists at the Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine (MDC) in Berlin, Germany and the University of Pretoria (UP) has found that naked mole-rats can communicate with one another within their own colony. They do this with a unique dialect that is specific to that individual colony.

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Fencing-in of Botswana elephants could explain why 350 elephants died in one area, reveals UP-led study

An international study led by the University of Pretoria’s (UP) Professor Rudi van Aarde suggests that the mass die-off of 350 elephants in one area of northern Botswana last year could be attributed to the fencing-in of these animals.

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UP researcher’s team discovers new compounds with the potential to eliminate malaria

The discovery involves the identification of unique compounds that are able to kill several stages of the malaria-causing parasite and can block the transmission of the parasite between humans and mosquitoes.

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UP research project: Retrofitting unused spaces can help South African cities adapt to climate change

Identifying opportunities for building owners and community groups in cities to take the initiative on a small scale can be part of SA’s response to climate change, write UP lecturer Jan Hugo and Professor Chrisna du Plessis.

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Curious Kids: do cats and dogs understand us when we miaow or bark?

There’s been a lot of research about communication between people and domestic animals like dogs and cats. But we don’t yet have the answer to your very interesting question. We don’t know what cats and dogs think or if they understand us when we use their noises.

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Concentration camps in the South African War? Here are the real facts

More than a century after 48 000 people died in concentration camps in what’s known as the South African War between 1899 and 1902 – or the Anglo-Boer War – the events of that period are back in the headlines.

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