A dedicated team of South African scientists
University of Cape Town
A/Prof Jonny Peter is Head of the Allergy and Clinical Immunology Division at Groote Schuur Hospital, and Head of the Allergy and Immunology Unit at the UCT Lung Institute. He is the first HPCSA-registered Allergist with a base speciality of internal medicine. His research interests include drug hypersensitivity in TB and HIV endemic settings, urticaria and angioedema, South African aerobiology, and primary immunodeficiency. He is the co-ordinating investigator of pollencount.co.za.
Dilys Berman has been identifying pollen and fungal spore in the ambient air since 1984. She has a doctoral degree in Aerobiology and her special interest is regional differences in the airborne pollen and fungal spore aeroallergens in South Africa.
Nanike Esterhuizen is a postdoctoral research fellow at the University of Cape Town’s Lung Institute, where she is characterizing the aerobiomes of South Africa and conducting pollen monitoring for the South African Pollen Network. Nanike has a PhD in Zoology from Stellenbosch University, where she studied the botanical origin and related properties of South African honeys produced from indigenous vegetation.
University of the Witwatersrand
Prof Marion Bamford is the Director of the Evolutionary Studies Institute. She is a palaeobotanist specialised in wood anatomy. Her research includes fossil plants, palynology and palaeoenvironments and she has worked in many parts of East and southern Africa.
Frank H. Neumann, senior researcher, works on Neogene and Quaternary profiles from southern Africa, Israel and Central Europe. His aim is the reconstruction of past environments and the understanding of climatic fluctuations and the evolution of biomes. He also tests honey for its origin by looking at the pollen content.
Moteng Elizabeth Moseri
Kevwe Eweto is an MSc candidate at the Evolutionary Studies Institute of the University of the Witwatersrand. Her research examines how the vegetation of the uMgeni Vlei nature reserve has evolved over the course of the Holocene millennial time scale. She is analysing modern and fossil pollen and spores to establish a detailed vegetation and climatic reconstruction of the region.
Linus Ajikah holds a PhD in Botany with specialization in Palynology from the University of Lagos. His research interest focus on investigating and reconstructing paleovegetation changes and making climatic inferences using palynomorphs in the late Holocene. He is presently a postdoctoral candidate in the school of governance, University of the Witwatersrand. He is analyzing airborne pollen and spores from selected locations in the city of Johannesburg to determine their seasonal prevalence.
Prosper Bande is the Palynology Laboratory Technician at the University of Witwatersrand. She has a BSc degree majoring in Biological Sciences and Geology from the University of Zimbabwe, and a BSc Honours degree in Geography from the University of Witwatersrand. She is also an MSc candidate in GIS and Remote Sensing at Wits School of Geography, Archaeology and Environmental Science.
University of the Free State
Riaz Seedat is head of the Department of Otorhinolaryngology (Ear, Nose and Throat) at the University of the Free State and Universitas Academic Hospital. His areas of interest include paediatric otorhinolaryngology and allergy, in particular allergic rhinitis and allergen sensitization patterns.
Dr Lize Joubert is a lecturer at the University of the Free State. Her research focus is on plant taxonomy, pollination biology and floral evolutionary development with a specific interest in the Apocynaceae and Scrophulariaceae families. She is also curator of the Geo Potts Herbarium with an important collection of the flora of central South Africa.
Andri van Aardt
Andri van Aardt is a lecturer in modern and palaeo-ecology at the University of the Free State’s Department of Plant Sciences. She follows a multidisciplinary approach in comparing modern vegetation to palaeo-environments, reconstructed from the fossil pollen record. The reconstruction of past environments is done using the pollen reference collection and palynology laboratory facilities at the University.
Kristen Nienaber is a Masters candidate in Plant Ecology at the University of the Free State. Her study aims to determine wetland health using plant and soil indicators in the Golden Gate Highlands National Park, Free State. Her interest lies in wetland rehabilitation. She is running the pollen trap at the University and helping to identify the different types of pollen.
Marius Müller is an MSc Plant Ecology candidate at the University of the Free State. His research examines the quantification of soil- and vegetation degradation in the Golden Gate Highlands National Park. His interests lie in Phytogeography and Environmental Rehabilitation and Conservation. He is currently running the pollen trap at the University and helping to identify the pollen.
University of Kwa-Zulu Natal
Ahmed Ismail Manjra
University of Pretoria
Nelson Mandela University
Erin Hilmer is the lab technician at the new palaeobotanical laboratory at Nelson Mandela University. She has a BSc Honours degree in geology, which focused on geochronology, and will be putting this to use in determining the ages of new palynological sites for her MSc.
Dr Werner Hoek is an Ear Nose and throat specialist at Gariep Medi Clinic and Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Hospitals in Kimberley. His areas of interest include allergic rhinitis, chronic sinusitis and conductive hearing loss.
A/Prof Rebecca Garland is a Principal Researcher in the Climate and Air Quality Modelling group at the CSIR. Her research interests include air quality and atmospheric science in southern Africa. She has Extraordinary Appointments at the University of Pretoria and the North-West University.
Mrs. Juanette John is an environmental health scientist in the Natural Resources, Enabling Infrastructure, Professional and Public Services Division of the CSIR. She holds a Masters in Community (Environmental) Health from the University of Pretoria. Her key competencies include Vulnerability Assessment, Health Impact Assessment, statistical analysis and spatial analysis.
Seneca Naidoo is a Researcher within the Climate and Air Quality Modelling Research Group at the CSIR in Pretoria. She obtained an MSc in Atmospheric Sciences in 2014 from the University of the Witwatersrand. Seneca’s research interests focus on the air quality and climate change linkages that exist with urban environments. Seneca has gained much experience in the collection and analysis of large datasets. She has also worked extensively with the ambient air quality monitoring data from the both the Vaal Triangle Airshed and Highveld Priority Areas ambient air quality monitoring networks.