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UCT Research Report '11
Virna Leaner, BSc(Hons) PhD Cape Town
Molecular mechanisms associated with the development
and treatment of cervical cancer
Cynthia Sikakana, BS Wesleyan PhD
Medical education, Metabolism of xenobiotics
Honorary Professor
C. Seoighe, PhD Dublin
Honorary Associate Professor
Luiz Zerbini, MSc PhD São Paulo Brazil
Emeritus Associate Professor
L R Thilo, MSc University of Pretoria Dr rer
Nat Heidelberg
Honorary Senior Lecturers
Henry Jabbour, PhD Sydney
G protein – coupled receptors in reproductive biology
and HIV
Colleen Flanagan, PhD Cape Town
Cyclooxygenases in gynaecological cancers
Honorary Research Asssociate
Arvind Varsani, PhD Cape Town.
Postdoctoral fellows
Zac Macdonald
Pauline van der Watt
Alexander Zawaira
Andrew JM Nel
Putuma Gqamana
Brandy Young
Jason Van Rooyen
Kate Hadley
Yabing Wang
Nashia Stellenboom
Jean Watermeyer
Aron Abera
Victor Francis
Ross Anderson
Claire Newton
Jacqueline Bracher
Ross Douglas
Colin Anthony
Chief scientific officer
Sylva Schwager, MSc
Proteolytic processing of membrane proteins
Research Associates and mid-career Fellows
Kurt Sales, PhD (Katz/Millar lab, IIDMM)
Georgia Schaefer (Parker lab, ICGEB)
Catherine Kaschula (Parker lab, ICGEB)
Contact Details
Division of Medical Biochemistry, Dept. of Clinical
Laboratory Sciences, Level 6, Room 6.07, Falmouth
Building, UCT Medical School, Anzio Rd, Observatory,
7925, Cape Town, South Africa
Tel: 021 404 7712 (Secretary), 021 406 6206 (Head)
Fax: 021 4066061
Head of Division: Professor Mark Nicol
Divisional Profile
The Division of Medical Microbiology links a state-of-
the-art diagnostic microbiology service based at Groote
Schuur Hospital to an active research programme based
at the Health Sciences Campus as well as within the
National Health Laboratory Service.
We aim to conduct research that is relevant to the
needs of diagnostic microbiology services and focused
on important infectious diseases in South Africa. This
includes work on the development and assessment
of novel diagnostics for tuberculosis as well as on the
transmission and molecular epidemiology of drug resistant
pathogens within our hospitals. A satellite unit of the
National Institute for Communicable Diseases, the Unit for
Molecular Epidemiology, is based within the Division. More
recently, together with the Department of Paediatrics and
Child Health, the Division has developed a programme
of research focusing on the evolution of the microbiome
in early childhood and the association between the
microbiome and respiratory illness in young children.
The Division has been successful in attracting substantial
research funding from the Wellcome Trust, EDCTP, National
Institutes of Health and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
in recent years and has a strong and growing research
focus. We aim to have impact on policy, as demonstrated
by recent major contributions to research leading to
changes in World Health Organization recommendations