SAMRC scientists share progress on science transformation projects

Cape Town | Researchers, funded through the South African Medical Research Council’s Research Capacity Development (RCD) programmes, will meet at an annual joint research meeting set to take place between the 25th and 27th July 2018 in Stellenbosch.

The meeting, hosted by the SAMRC’s Biomedical Research Innovation Platform (BRIP), will serve as a stage where 31 research interns and principal investigators from the Universities of Zululand (UNIZULU) and Limpopo (UL) will present updates on the latest developments in their research.

“We accepted these universities’ game changing proposals in 2015 and funded their research as it aligned with our institutional research priorities,” says SAMRC President & CEO Professor Glenda Gray. “It will be fascinating to experience this meeting of young minds and bear witness to our capacity development efforts coming to fruition. It is also encouraging that these scientists can become a part of the SAMRC legacy in the long run and possibly join the SAMRC’s extramural research,” adds Prof Gray.

UNIZULU and UL are amongst a pool of five selected universities to receive R30 million in funding for research in clinical or health research through the SAMRC’s HDI initiative. Established as part of the SAMRC’s transformation strategy, the HDI initiative funds historically under resourced institutions across the country. In 2015, the institutions, including the University of Fort Hare, Walter Sisulu University and the University of Venda each received R1 million per institution per annum for  period of  five years. 

“The HDI initiative has enabled our institutions to share both knowledge and amenities as a service to both young, up-and-coming scientists, as well as ultimately, the public of South Africa,” says BRIP Director Prof Johan Louw.  “We are excited to share the culmination of intensive training and development in the form of the research presented at this upcoming meeting,” says Prof Louw.

The three-day annual meeting will include presentations in the field of cancer research, indigenous medicines, environmental health and non-communicable diseases. 


About the SAMRC’s Research Capacity Development Division (RCD)
This division of the South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC) supports the growth of health research capacity by offering scholarships and grants to South African citizens who are pursuing their research careers in Medical and Health Sciences.

Eligible candidates:

  • Masters students
  • PhD students and Post-doctoral
  • Early-Career Investigators holding a PhD
  • Mid-Career Investigators

The RCD Division also focuses on strengthening capacity development within previously under-resourced universities to ensure they produce scientific knowledge for the advancement of health.

All scholarship applicants must be registered for the degree for which they seek funding.

For more information:

About the SAMRC’s Biomedical Research Innovation Platform (BRIP)
Established in 2006, The Biomedical Research and Innovation Platform (BRIP) was established in April 2006 by the South African Medical Research Council and stems from the former Diabetes Research Group of the Medical Research Council.

The Platform houses state-of-the-art-laboratories and has an established base of experienced researchers that are making a meaningful impact on non-communicable diseases (NCDs) within the South African context. A major research focus is on identification of risk-factor clusters relevant to NCDs in South Africa. The Platform is a leader in the development of screening tools to identify individuals at risk for diabetes at a very early stage.  Evaluation of novel therapeutics and drug candidates for the treatment of diabetes, diabetic cardiomyopathy and obesity within the South African context is a research priority.

For more information:


Release date: 
Monday, July 23, 2018 - 15:49
Keletso Ratsela
Contact: Keletso Ratsela

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