The Route to Market (R2M) series is being developed using funding from the Department of Science and Technology’s National Intellectual Property Office (NIPMO). Each booklet focuses on a specific sector/product type and highlights the key steps and considerations in bringing such a product to market in that sector – with an emphasis on the local South African context, i.e. bringing research outputs into the marketplace and achieving “impact through innovation”.
The University of Cape Town’s (UCT) Department of Computer Science is set to enjoy a major boost with the naming of Dr Melissa Densmore, senior lecturer and Information and Communications Technologies for Development (ICT4D) staff member, as a recipient of the prestigious $500 000 National Academies Keck Futures Initiative (NAKFI) Challenge grant.
Over the past decade or so, there has been a massive shift in cancer research toward discovering more targeted therapeutic alternatives to chemotherapy and radiation. Subscribing to this approach, Professor Virna Leaner, head of the Division of Medical Biochemistry at UCT, and her group of researchers have dedicated their academic work to looking for novel cancer biomarkers that could serve as therapeutic targets.
The rising incidence of cancer in Africa coupled with the spiralling prices of leading therapies indicates that there is a great need for locally developed immune-oncology diagnostics and therapeutics. Following 20 years of work in the fields of medical biotechnology and immunotherapy in Germany, Professor Stefan Barth was recruited by the Department of Science and Technology/National Research Foundation’s South African Research Chair (SARChI) in 2015 to lead the Tier 1 Chair in Cancer Biotechnology at UCT.