Upcoming UCT Inaugural Lectures for May/June

16 May 2023

Dear colleagues and students

Following the first two inspiring lectures in the UCT Inaugural Lecture series this year, I am pleased to announce the next two events in this series.

These will be held on 29 May and 8 June and will be presented by Professor Elizabeth Mayne and Professor Romy Parker respectively.

The UCT Inaugural Lecture series recognises and celebrates the promotions or appointments to full professorships of our colleagues. These lectures provide a platform for our professorial colleagues to share their scholarship with members of the wider university community and the general public in an accessible way.

Professor Mayne, whose inaugural lecture takes place on 29 May, will address the topic: “Racing the red queen: Immunology underlies all disease processes as well as the most successful treatment interventions of all time”. It will be held at 17:00 in the Neuroscience Institute Lecture Theatre, Groote Schuur Hospital.

Noting that immunology underlies all disease processes as well as being the most successful treatment intervention of all time, Professor Mayne will present her arguments on the timeliness of putting immunology back at the forefront of medicine and clinical science. She will describe some key highlights of the immunology journey in South Africa over the last 10 years, specifically focusing on the clinical discipline and the future of this science in the country.

Professor Mayne is a specialist haematologist and immunopathologist with a special interest in the interface between communicable and non-communicable diseases. She holds a PhD in molecular medicine from the University of the Witwatersrand. She has published extensively on HIV-associated cardiovascular disease, specifically endothelial dysfunction as an innate immune function. She is the current head of the immunology expert committee of the National Health Laboratory Service, as well as the chair of the expert chairs committee. In this role, she is integrally involved in promoting laboratory best practice for clinical immunology and haematology as well as teaching and training undergraduate and postgraduate students in immunology.

The next lecture will be presented by Professor Parker on 8 June in the Neuroscience Institute Lecture Theatre, Groote Schuur Hospital at 17:00. Her lecture is titled “Pain management to reduce suffering in South Africa: integrating interdisciplinary research into the healthcare professions.”

The university will share the abstract as well as RSVP details for the lecture through other communication channels in due course.

Professor Parker leads a dynamic and diverse team in the Department of Anaesthesia and Perioperative Medicine. She is a teacher, a researcher and a clinician working as part of the interdisciplinary team of the Groote Schuur Hospital’s Chronic Pain Management Clinic. Professor Parker is an active researcher who has supervised numerous postgraduate students. She is a passionate teacher, who was awarded the 2019 UCT Distinguished Teacher Award. She teaches undergraduate and postgraduate healthcare professionals and is the course convener of the Postgraduate Diploma in Interdisciplinary Pain Management, the first programme of its kind in Africa. Her research focuses on developing and testing mechanism-based pain treatments relevant to a South African context.

We look forward to hearing more from Professor Mayne and Professor Parker at these lectures that will address two relevant and important topics.


Emer Prof Daya Reddy
Vice-Chancellor (Interim)

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