R/€ = 14.28
R/$ = 10.66
Au 1296.29 $/oz
Pt 1479.50 $/oz
Apr 23, 2007
Nanotech capsules may aid TB treatmentBack
Engineering|Lausanne|Pretoria|Africa|Industrial|Nuclear|Systems|Africa|South Africa|USD|Science Park|Carrier Systems|Nano-based Drug Delivery Systems|Systems|HIV/Aids|Malaria|TB|Tuberculosis|Drug Delivery Systems|Nanocapsules|Congress|Council For Scientific|Council For Scientific And Industrial Research|Industrial Research|Swiss Federal Institute Of Technology In Lausanne|Ayanda Biosystems|Derek Hanekom|Infrastructure|Joseph Molapisi|Putin|Drug Delivery|Same Technology
© Reuse this The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), in collaboration with international partner Ayanda Biosystems based at the Science Park of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne is currently developing nanotechnology capsules for tuberculosis (TB) treatment.
Known as 'the technology of the very small', nanotechnology enables scientists to manipulate materials and particles that are a billionth of a metre, or about 1/80 000th of the diameter of a human hair.
The nanocapsules were being tested on animals, and the developers hoped that they would eventually decrease the number and frequency of drugs used by TB patients.
Addressing the World Nano Economic Congress 2007 at the CSIR in Pretoria on Monday, Deputy Minister of Science and Technology Derek Hanekom said that, although effective treatment was currently available, patients had to take up to four anti-TB drugs several times a week for up to six months, which often resulted in compliance challenges.
“Owing to the slow degrading and the slow release mechanism of the carrier systems, drug release can be prolonged through nano-based drug delivery systems, allowing for the administration of drugs once in seven days, instead of the current daily dosage.”
Hanekom pointed out that 250 000 new cases of TB were diagnosed annually in South Africa, saying that it was a major cause of death on the subcontinent, mainly owing to coinfection of HIV/aids.
The same technology was being applied for malaria, HIV/Aids and other diseases where patient compliance was high.
It was estimated that $12,4-billion was invested in nanotech research and development worldwide in 2006 and over $50-billion worth of nanoenabled products were sold in the same year.
“The trend was highlighted last week by President Putin when he unveiled a $1-billion initiative to develop nanotechnology and turn the Kurchatov Nuclear Institute into the country’s research hub for nanoscience,” Hanekom said.
In line with the global trend, South Africa has developed its own nanotechnology strategy, aimed at guiding and assisting achievement of a competitive growing economy and improving the quality of life.
Speaking to Engineering News Online on the sidelines of the conference, Hanekom said that while there had been a bid for R450-million of nanotechnology funding for the next three years, only R170-million had been granted.
He added however, that government had embarked on a series of programmes aimed at enabling nanotechnology research and development, and was in the process of establishing two nanotechnology centres to serve as the hub of nanotechnology activities.
The centres will be housed at the CSIR and Mintek.
“All the groundwork has been done, the infrastructure is already under way and we expect the centres to be fully operational before the end of this year. We are busy procuring equipment,” stated CSIR spokesperson Joseph Molapisi.
Edited by: Liezel Hill© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Updated 5 hours ago Nigeria-focused oil and gas explorer Oando Energy Resources (OER) on Wednesday announced that it had completed the acquisition of the Nigerian upstream oil and gas business of New York-listed ConocoPhillips for a total cash consideration of $1.5-billion as well as a...
Updated 5 hours ago The disciplinary hearing of telecommunications giant Telkom’s suspended CFO Jacques Schindehütte was set to resume next Wednesday. Telkom said it hoped the hearing would result in a definitive resolution on the matter of Schindehütte’s personal conduct after a...
Updated 6 hours ago While unauthorised expenditure by South Africa’s municipalities has declined year-on-year, irregular expenditure has recorded a R2-billion increase as municipalities failed to follow legislated procurement procedures, the latest Auditor-General South Africa audit...
Recent Research Reports
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Construction 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the construction industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the sector and includes details of employment in the sector, infrastructure and municipal spending, as well as insight into companies’...
Real Economy Insight: Electricity 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the electricity industry over the past 12 months, including details of State-owned power utility Eskom’s generation activities, funding and tariffs, independent power producers and prospects for the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Road and Rail 2014 (PDF Report)
This six-page brief covers key developments in the road and rail industries over the past 12 months, including details of South Africa’s road and rail network and prospects for both sectors.
Real Economy Insight: Steel 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the steel industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the global and South African steel and stainless steel markets, South Africa’s major steel producers and events that have shaped these markets.
This Week's Magazine
Multinational semiconductor chipmaker corporation Intel announced its national campaign to further acquire partners to drive its She Will Connect programme, an initiative that aims to expand digital literacy skills to young women in developing countries, further into...
South Africa's MeerKAT radio telescope array programme should get back on schedule within a few months. This assurance has been given by SKA South Africa (SKA SA) associate director: science and technology Prof Justin Jonas. Early last month, Science and Technology...
The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa’s (PRASA’s) Metrorail service will remain a subsidised service following its current multibillion-rand rolling stock, station, depot and signalling upgrade programme. PRASA group CEO Lucky Montana has allayed fears that...
The uncertainties around the remediation of affected areas as addressed in the Contaminated Land Provisions in the National Environmental Management: Waste Act No 59 of 2008 will possibly spark litigation and disputes between landowners and businesses, contractors...
South Africa is currently the largest component of the African Development Bank’s (AfDB’s) active portfolio in Southern Africa, comprising 62.5% of the bank’s $7.9-billion exposure to the 12-country region – the second largest beneficiary is Mauritius, which...