Budding scientists to rub shoulders with Nobel Laureates

Belinda Bantham -- Tue, 03/13/2018 - 10:10

Budding scientists to rub shoulders with Nobel Laureates

Two exceptional young researchers of the North-West University (NWU) will embark on a life-changing journey to Lindau, Germany where they will be rubbing shoulders with Nobel Laureates.

Edith Phalane and Blessing Ahiante from the Hypertension in Africa Research Team (HART) are two of only six young scientists in South Africa to attend the 68th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting in June.

Only 600 of the most highly qualified young scientists from 84 countries were chosen to participate in this year’s meeting which will focus on physiology and medicine.

Edith and Blessing’s journey started last year when the Academy of Science South Africa (ASSAf) started the nomination process for South African students who study physiology and medicine to attend the Lindau Meeting.

According to ASSAf successful scientists are outstanding graduate and postdoctoral students under the age of 35. They were selected through a multi-stage international selection process and represent more than 200 scientific institutes, universities, foundations and research-orientated companies from research nations.

Edith and Blessing will present their research project to fellow young scientists and the Nobel Prize winners during their stay in Lindau.

Edith is a registered second-year PhD student in the School for Physiology, Nutrition and Consumer Sciences and her research focuses on the evaluation of demographic, cardiovascular and metabolic health transition of a South African cohort living with HIV over the course of 10 years.

Blessing is currently a third-year PhD student and her research explores leptin from endothelial activation to subclinical target organ damage in young white and black adults – the African-PREDICT study.

“We are also best friends and cannot wait for this opportunity to meet and exchange research ideas with so many young people from so many other countries in the world,” says Blessing.

Prof Refilwe Phaswana-Mafuya, deputy vice-chancellor for research and Innovation at the NWU, congratulated the two young women “for making the NWU great”.

Edith and Blessing are part of the more than 50 percent female representatives to attend this year’s event from 24 to 29 June.

 Blessing Ahiante and Edith Phalane are were excited to attend the 68th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting in Germany.