By addressing existing knowledge gaps and strengthening African research networks, we seek solutions to African challenges and work to ensure that African priorities are represented in global neuroscience.
The University of Cape Town (UCT) Neuroscience Institute is designed to be comprehensive in nature and cross-cutting in function. This distinguishes it from similar institutes in the global north and makes it possible for experts in a range of fields to come together to better understand African challenges: the interplay between the brain and conditions like trauma or infection, and its consequences for brain development and function.
Dr Melissa Nel, Neuroscience Institute Post-Doctoral Research Fellow in the Division of Neurology, Department of Medicine, is one of seven recipients of the L'Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science South African National Programme awards. This initiative aims to reach and empower women scientists across Africa and serves one goal; to highlight scientific excellence of female researchers in South Africa, in order to create role models, encourage other young women to become scientists, and empower women to shape the future of the continent.
The latest issue of the University of Cape Town’s (UCT) research magazine, Umthombo, was launched at the annual research function last night, along with the year’s Research and Innovation Highlights. A collection of articles in the fourth issue of Umthombo casts a spotlight on the comprehensive and cross-cutting Neuroscience Institute, which brings together expertise in diverse fields to better understand the human brain in health and disease, address African and global health challenges, and grow local capacity in neuroscience.
A new paper published in Nature Communications by Dr Dorit Hockman, a developmental biologist based at the University of Cape Town (UCT), uses the most primitive living vertebrate – the lamprey – as a genetic time machine.
She explains how studying a specialised group of cells called the neural crest can help us understand the development of vertebrates – including ourselves.