March Events – Challenges and solutions in HIV

HIV_H9_T-cell_IISciBraai is excited to be promoting local science-, technology- and innovation-related events in the Mother City. This month, these events dive into new technologies and research in the field of HIV diagnostics and care.

These talks are aimed at the public, so the academic mumbo-jumbo will be kept to a minimum. You can expect simple explanations, lively discussion, and a great chance to network and meet new people.

KAT-O: HIV Apps and Metabolic Chambers

When: Thursday, March 19, 2015, 6 – 8.30pm
Where:  City Varsity Campus, 18 Roeland Street, Cape Town (map)
Other Info: Drinks and snacks on sale

HealthQ Technologies is a high-tech startup combining skills from various disciplines to provide solutions in the digital health & wellness space. HealthQ Technologies focuses on collaborating with global companies, assisting with the industrialisation and commercialization of their products and technologies in the wellness, weight-loss and fitness space. The company recently constructed the world’s first open-source metabolic chamber – at a fraction of the cost usually associated with constructing such a sophisticated analytical tool. As part of the open-source initiative, they are compiling a complete technical guide for constructing a metabolic chamber – including details and source codes of all hardware and software components used.

Aviro is an app designed to help nurses in primary care settings to efficiently treat HIV patients. Based on South African clinical guidelines, it enables nurses to determine whether a patient is eligible for ARV treatment, what drugs to use and when to start treatment. The app goes a step further by providing access to a referral system and the HIV hotline. Aviro provides real-time, immediate feedback and guidance for the clinician, so that excellent and reliable care can be delivered to every patient. Aviro calculates information that is essential for patient management, that is often missed in routine exams.

Science Cafe Cape Town – HIV: Why can’t we cure it?

When: Thursday, Mar 26, 2015, 6 – 8pm
Where:  Truth Coffee Roasting, 36 Buitenkant St
Other Info: Free Entry – food and drinks on sale

It’s been 30 years since HIV was discovered; yet we still don’t have a cure. We can successfully manage HIV, extending the lives of people affected, but we haven’t found a way to eradicate the disease. This month we welcome back HIV researcher Simon Travers to talk about how we can find more effective ways to treat HIV and to prevent infection ever happening.

Simon runs a research group at the University of the Western Cape, working on how HIV becomes drug-resistant and figuring out how to design better drugs. He also looks at why some people are better able to control HIV infections than others. Simon is a keen cyclist, kite-surfer, surfer and a passionate rugby supporter. We had the pleasure of hosting Simon for our first Science Cafe, which events success was largely due to his talent as a speaker.

Arrive 15 minutes early to ensure a seat – last month was packed!

Paul Kennedy

Paul Kennedy is a science writer and entrepreneur interested in innovation, sustainability and research policy in Africa. He trained as a molecular biologist before realising that the research out there was way more interesting than what he was doing in the lab. He is also the co-founder of ScienceLink www.sciencelink.co.za. See more at www.about.me/paul.kennedy.

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