Johannesburg, South Africa

University of South Africa

www.unisa.ac.za
Johannesburg, South Africa

The University of South Africa is the largest university on the African continent and attracts a third of all higher education students in South Africa. The university has a student headcount of over 300,000 students, including African and international students in 130 countries worldwide, making it one of the world's mega universities.Unisa is a dedicated open distance education institution. Open distance learning entails a student-centred approach that gives students flexibility and choice over what, when, where, and how they learn, and provides them with extensive student support.As a comprehensive university, Unisa offers both vocational and academic programmes, many of which have received international accreditation, as well as an extensive geographical footprint, giving their students recognition and employability in many countries the world over. Wikipedia.

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Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA | Phase: INFRA-2012-3.3. | Award Amount: 1.07M | Year: 2012

The Virtual Atomic and Molecular Data Centre (VAMDC) is a major new European initiative now building a unified, secure, documented, flexible and interoperable e-science environment-based interface to 17 existing A\M databases.\nThe SUP@VAMDC (Support at VAMDC) aims at building upon the VAMDC e-infrastructure, supporting different studies and actions linked to the VAMDC e-infrastructure that will in accord with the mission of INFRA-2012-3.3:.\n\tProvide operational, legal and technologicalsupport for studies aimed at developing a sustainable open scientific data e- infrastructure in Atomic and Molecular Data.\n\tProvide the support and medium for including authentication, authorisation and accounting (AAA) as well as licensing and tools within the VAMDC brand\n\tPromote and fashions future interoperability (technical, semantic, reference architecture, etc) across A&M data community through the promotion, monitoring and adoption of common standards.\n\tProvide support for dissemination actions aimed at raising the visibility of the VAMDC e-infrastructure towards wider audiences such as other domains which could use the VAMDC e-infrastructure for their own science or for their own dissemination of data, such as students and/or citizen-scientists. This programme includes the development of education-related tools linking VAMDCs scientific repositories and research data infrastructures, including establishing a free open access repository containing all peer-reviewed articles resulting from the VAMDC programme.\n\tProvide support in developing a globally connected and interoperable VAMDC e-infrastructure between EU and the rest of the world, including Brazil , South Africa, Asia, Australia, India through hosting workshops and supporting dialogue between such synergistic structures.\n\tAnalyse and evaluate possible business models for supporting an Open Science model (OPEN VAMDC) whilst assessing the impact of such a modeling in achieving financial sustainability.


Dalal S.,University of South Africa
AIDS | Year: 2017

OBJECTIVE:: Despite the enormous expansion of HIV testing services (HTS), an estimated 40% of people with HIV infection remain undiagnosed. To enhance the efficiency of HTS new approaches are needed. The World Health Organization (WHO) conducted a systematic review on the effectiveness of assisted partner notification in improving HIV test uptake and diagnosis, and the occurrence of adverse events, to inform the development of normative guidelines. METHODS:: We systematically searched five electronic databases through June 2016. We also contacted experts in the field and study authors for additional information where needed. Eligible studies compared assisted HIV partner notification services to passive or no notification. Where multiple studies reported comparable outcomes, meta-analysis was conducted using a random-effects model to produce relative risks or risk ratios and 95% confidence intervals. RESULTS:: Of 1742 citations identified, four randomized controlled trials (RCT) and six observational studies totalling 5150 index patients from eight countries were included. Meta-analysis of three individually-randomised trials showed that assisted partner notification services resulted in a 1.5-fold increase in HTS uptake among partners compared to passive referral (Relative Risk [RR]?=?1.46; 95% CI: 1.22–1.75; I?=?0%). The proportion of HIV-positive partners was 1.5 times higher with assisted partner notification than with passive referral (RR?=?1.47; 95% CI: 1.12–1.92; I?=?0%). Few instances of violence or harm occurred. CONCLUSIONS:: Assisted partner notification improved partner testing and diagnosis of HIV-positive partners, with few reports of harm. WHO strongly recommends voluntary assisted HIV partner notification services be offered as part of a comprehensive package of testing and care. Copyright © 2017 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.


OBJECTIVE:: We explore the impact of antiretroviral therapy (ART) on partnership acquisition and dissolution rates and changes in sexual behaviours among HIV-infected adults. DESIGN:: Using detailed longitudinal data from a prospective cohort of HIV-infected adults with CD4<200?cell/ml (ART-eligible) or CD4>500?cell/ml (pre-ART) conducted in rural KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, 2009-2012. METHODS:: Partnership acquisition and dissolution are explored through survival analysis methods, while generalized linear models were fitted for the sexual behaviour outcomes with interaction terms to allow the association with ART to vary over time. Throughout, the primary comparison of interest for each outcome is differences between the two ART groups. RESULTS:: ART is not associated with partner acquisition or relationship dissolution. During follow-up, the two ART groups do not differ in the odds of being sexually active nor the number of sex acts, while the odds of unprotected sex are significantly lower for partnerships of ART-eligible participants, a0R?=?0.26, 95%CI(0.15,0.43). Relationship-level characteristics including cohabitation status and wanting more children with that partner are associated with higher odds and increased frequency of sexual activity, increased odds of unprotected sex; while living with partner, higher relationship quality and longer relationship duration are associated with lower risk of partnership dissolution. CONCLUSION:: Being on ART was not associated with increased sexual risk behaviours, a reassuring finding given the WHO recommends ART initiation upon HIV diagnosis. The importance of relationship-level characteristics provides evidence that HIV care services should offer routine support for HIV disclosure and sexual risk reduction, and promotion of couples-testing and positive couple-relationships. Copyright © 2017 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.


The need for scale-up of laboratory milling data to full operation is critical especially for the proper selection of design parameters. This paper investigates the extent to which full-scale milling conditions and design parameters influence the discharged product. Austin's scale-up procedure for batch grinding data is used to this end and is applied to a continuous mill operated in open circuit. The circuit was simulated in steady-state regime using randomly generated parameters within predefined ranges. These enabled the iterative computation of the corresponding mill products, average characteristic sizes and standard deviations. Simulation outcomes suggest that mill diameter, top-up ball diameter, in-mill flow pattern, and two scale-up correction factors in Austin's model have a greater bearing on mill product. The two correction factors account for the change in mill diameter and ball size from batch to full-scale milling respectively. © 2017 Elsevier B.V.


Fossette S.,University of South Africa
Proceedings. Biological sciences / The Royal Society | Year: 2014

Large oceanic migrants play important roles in ecosystems, yet many species are of conservation concern as a result of anthropogenic threats, of which incidental capture by fisheries is frequently identified. The last large populations of the leatherback turtle, Dermochelys coriacea, occur in the Atlantic Ocean, but interactions with industrial fisheries could jeopardize recent positive population trends, making bycatch mitigation a priority. Here, we perform the first pan-Atlantic analysis of spatio-temporal distribution of the leatherback turtle and ascertain overlap with longline fishing effort. Data suggest that the Atlantic probably consists of two regional management units: northern and southern (the latter including turtles breeding in South Africa). Although turtles and fisheries show highly diverse distributions, we highlight nine areas of high susceptibility to potential bycatch (four in the northern Atlantic and five in the southern/equatorial Atlantic) that are worthy of further targeted investigation and mitigation. These are reinforced by reports of leatherback bycatch at eight of these sites. International collaborative efforts are needed, especially from nations hosting regions where susceptibility to bycatch is likely to be high within their exclusive economic zone (northern Atlantic: Cape Verde, Gambia, Guinea Bissau, Mauritania, Senegal, Spain, USA and Western Sahara; southern Atlantic: Angola, Brazil, Namibia and UK) and from nations fishing in these high-susceptibility areas, including those located in international waters.


Volunteers are increasingly being relied upon to provide home-based care for people living with AIDS in South Africa and this presents several unique challenges specific to the HIV/AIDS context in Africa. Yet it is not clear what motivates people to volunteer as home-based caregivers. Drawing on the functional theory on volunteer motivations, this study uses data from qualitative interviews with 57 volunteer caregivers of people living with HIV/AIDS in six semi-rural South African communities to explore volunteer motivations. Findings revealed complex motivations underlying volunteering in AIDS care. Consistent with functional theorizing, most of the volunteers reported having more than one motive for enrolling as volunteers. Of the 11 categories of motivations identified, those relating to altruistic concerns for others and community, employment or career benefits and a desire by the unemployed to avoid idleness were the most frequently mentioned. Volunteers also saw volunteering as an opportunity to learn caring skills or to put their own skills to good use, for personal growth and to attract good things to themselves. A few of the volunteers were heeding a religious call, hoping to gain community recognition, dealing with a devastating experience of AIDS in the family or motivated for social reasons. Care organizations' poor understanding of volunteer motives, a mismatch between organizational goals and volunteer motivations, and inadequate funding meant that volunteers' most pressing motives were not satisfied. This led to discontentment, resentment and attrition among volunteers. The findings have implications for home-based care policies and programmes, suggesting the need to rethink current models using non-stipended volunteers in informal AIDS care. Information about volunteer motivations could help organizations plan recruitment messages, recruit volunteers whose motives match organizational goals and plan how to assist volunteers to satisfy these motives. This could reduce resentment and attrition among volunteers and improve programme sustainability. © The Author 2010; all rights reserved.


Odhiambo N.M.,University of South Africa
Energy Policy | Year: 2010

In this paper we examine the causal relationship between energy consumption and economic growth in three sub-Saharan African countries, namely South Africa, Kenya and Congo (DRC). We incorporate prices as an intermittent variable in a bivariate setting between energy consumption and economic growth-thereby creating a simple trivariate framework. Using the ARDL-bounds testing procedure, we find that the causality between energy consumption and economic growth varies significantly across the countries under study. The results show that for South Africa and Kenya there is a unidirectional causal flow from energy consumption to economic growth. However, for Congo (DRC) it is economic growth that drives energy consumption. These findings have important policy implications insofar as energy conservation policies are concerned. In the case of Congo (DRC), for example, the implementation of energy conservation policies may not significantly affect economic growth because the country's economy is not entirely energy dependent. However, for South Africa and Kenya there is a need for more energy supply augmentations in order to cope with the long-run energy demand. In the short-run, however, the two countries should explore more efficient and cost-effective sources of energy in order to address the energy dependency problem. © 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Padayachee K.,University of South Africa
Computers and Security | Year: 2012

This paper aims at surveying the extrinsic and intrinsic motivations that influence the propensity toward compliant information security behavior. Information security behavior refers to a set of core information security activities that have to be adhered to by end-users to maintain information security as defined by information security policies. The intention is to classify the research done on compliant information security behavior from an end-user perspective and arrange it as a taxonomy predicated on Self-Determination Theory (SDT). In addition, the relative significance of factors that contribute to compliant information security behavior is evaluated on the basis of empirical studies. The taxonomy will be valuable in providing a comprehensive overview of the factors that influence compliant information security behavior and in identifying areas that require further research. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Widgerow A.D.,University of South Africa
International Wound Journal | Year: 2013

As with all physiologic processes, chronic wounds are associated with unique intracellular and cellular/extracellular matrix (ECM) receptor types and signalling messages. These cellular receptors mediate responses of the epidermis to provisional wound matrix and change in form and number in cases of impaired wound healing. Integrins are the major cell-surface receptors for cell adhesion and migration and epidermal keratinocytes express several integrins that bind ECM ligands in provisional wound ECM. Integrin receptors and more particularly integrin clusters and focal adhesion points appear to influence epidermal and dermal cell matrix interactions, cell motility, cell phenotype and ultimate healing trajectory. In chronic wounds, a variety of changes in receptors have been identified: decreased integrin α5β1 receptors affect the integration of fibronectin and subsequent keratinocyte migration; integrin αvβ6 stimulate transforming growth factor (TGF)-β and may increase the susceptibility to ulceration and fibrosis; however, TGF-β signal receptors have been found to be dysfunctional in many chronic wounds; additionally receptor interactions result in increased senescent cells including fibroblasts, myofibroblasts and even keratinocytes - this produces a degradative ECM and wound bed and corrosive chronic wound fluid. The activation or inhibition of integrin receptors by various agents may provide an excellent means of influencing wound healing. This process offers an earlier intervention into the wound healing cascade promoting intrinsic healing and elaboration of growth factors and ECM proteins, which may be more cost effective than the traditional attempts at extrinsic addition of these agents. © 2012 The Author International Wound Journal © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd and Medicalhelplines.com Inc.


Patent
University of South Africa | Date: 2013-11-14

A method and an apparatus for treating a fluid are disclosed. The apparatus includes a cylindrical chamber of non-magnetic material for holding a volume of fluid to be treated. The fluid contains a quantity of magnetic particles, preferably nanoparticles, having desired properties for treating the fluid. The apparatus includes a magnetic field generator for creating a non-static magnetic field within the chamber, thereby to induce motion in the magnetic particles within the chamber in use. The chamber has an inlet through which fluid to be treated can be introduced, and an outlet through which treated fluid can be removed from the chamber. Sets of windings are disposed concentrically about the chamber and arranged to create a rotating magnetic field within the chamber. Preferably the rotating magnetic field rotates in the opposite sense to swirling rotation of the fluid in the chamber. This enhances contact between the nano-particles and the fluid to be treated.

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