I am a cardiovascular physiologist, appointed as senior lecturer and researcher in the field of Human Cardiovascular Physiology.
As researcher, I have been part of the Hypertension in Africa Research Team (HART) since 2010 and have been performing research in several research studies, including the African-PREDICT study, PURE study, SABPA II study and EndoAfrica study. During this time, I was trained to use several clinical apparatus and to perform various extensive cardiovascular measurements. I also supervise several honours, masters and doctorate students.
My research mainly focuses on cardiovascular physiology, specifically with regards to hypertension, inflammation and epidemiology. I completed my PhD in 2015, which focussed on the association of soluble urokinase plasminogen activator receptor (suPAR), a novel inflammatory marker, with lifestyle and cardiometabolic risk factors which may play a role in the development of cardiovascular diseases such as hypertension, and whether this marker can predict cardiovascular mortality among this population, which is already double burdened by a high prevalence of hypertension and HIV.
In 2016, I visited the British Heart Foundation Cardiovascular Research Centre at Glasgow University, Scotland as a post-doctoral research fellow, where I worked closely with Dr. Jennifer Logue and Dr. Paul Welsh and investigated the effect of the Glasgow and Clyde Weight Management Service programme (2003-2015) on the cardiometabolic profile of more than 4000 diabetic patients.
Furthermore, I have published several research articles as first and co-author, all in international peer-reviewed journals with impact factors between 1.196 and 6.175. In addition, I have presented at several national and international conferences and have received the Lionel Opie Award: Winner of the Joint 1st Place Prize for Best Poster Presentation of the Discovery Health Clinical Excellence Awards at the Stroke & Hypertension Congress in 2014. I am currently part of the International Society of Hypertension New Investigators Network (ISH-NIN), South African Hypertension Society (SAHS) and the Golden Key International Honour Society.
In my work, I aim to obtain first-hand knowledge from experts in my field and to build a network with future collaborators to assist me in developing as an innovative researcher, as well as to teach and inspire students to become future researchers.