The CSIR bioprospecting research group has tested more than 7 000 randomly-selected South African plants
Researchers based at South Africa's CSIR have made a breakthrough in isolating five compounds that show efficacy against X-DR TB, the virulent strain of tuberculosis that has gripped the world. X-DR (extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis, those strains of TB resistant to both first and second line drugs), leaves infected people virtually untreatable with currently available anti-TB drugs.
Lynne Smit It is all too easy to get caught up in the technicalities of genetic therapy, where the diagnosis of a disease by looking at a single gene on a microscopically small embryo can seem like magic to the uninformed. But as slide after slide of smiling parents with healthy children come up on the screen, it soon becomes clear that the miracle of birth is what the International Conference on Fertility and Sterility, IFFS 2007, last month, was all about.
Medicinal plants are an integral part of African culture, one of the oldest and most diverse in the world. In South Africa, 21st century drug therapy is used side-by-side with traditional African medicines to heal the sick.
American and South African scientists working at the epicenter of the AIDS epidemic in South Africa have discovered how the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) "exhausts" killer T cells that would otherwise attack the virus. The researchers found that HIV can simply "turn off" fully functional T cells by flipping a molecular switch on the cells.