Academic

Prof Hugo (HW) Huisman

Professor, Director of HART
PhD in Physiology
  +27 18 299 2439
  +27 18 285 2432
  Hugo.Huisman@nwu.ac.za
  F12-206, Potchefstroom Campus
Cardiovascular Physiology, Vascular structure and function

Prof HW Huisman performs his research in the field of cardiovascular physiology, especially on factors related to changes in vascular structure and function in the development of hypertension.  Although the research is mainly done in low socio-economic communities of South Africa this work also contributes to the existing body of knowledge regarding vascular dysfunction, arterial stiffness and early vascular aging. This also implicates the influence of vascular peptides, hormones, enzymes, oxidative stress, inflammation and other markers associated with cardiovascular disease under different circumstances like obesity, urbanization and aging.

Prof Carina (CMC) Mels

Professor
PhD in Biochemistry
  +27 18 299 1983
  carina.mels@nwu.ac.za
  F12-104, Potchefstroom Campus
Oxidative stress, Metabolomics, Proteomics

Prof Mels is a Professor of Physiology and manager of the Research Laboratory in the Hypertension in Africa Research Team (HART). She obtained her PhD in Biochemistry in 2011 from the NWU and holds an Y2 rating from the National Research Foundation. She has published numerous articles in international peer-reviewed journals on various aspects associated with hypertension. Her specific research focus is on the involvement of oxidative stress in the development of cardiovascular disease. Recently she also started to incorporate 'omics', especially Metabolomics and Proteomics, to investigate possible mechanisms associated with the development of cardiovascular disease.

Prof Ruan Kruger

Associate Professor
PhD in Physiology
  +27 18 299 2904
  Ruan.kruger@g.nwu.ac.za
  F11-101, Potchefstroom Campus
Pediatric hypertension and premature cardiovascular disease development

A/Prof Ruan Kruger is the current Interim Research Leader of the NRF SARChI Research Chair in Early detection and prevention of cardiovascular disease in Africa with a research focus on cardiovascular disease development in children and young adults. He is a Y-rated researcher and also the current Chair of both the International Society of Hypertension (ISH) New Investigators Committee and the South African Hypertension Society (SAHS) Next Generation Network. He serves on the Board of the South African Hypertension Society (SAHS) and the Scientific Committee of the International Congress of Hypertension in Children and Adolescents.

Prof Carla (CMT) Fourie

Associate Professor
PhD, RN (General, midwifery and psychiatry)
  +27 18 299 2080
  carla.fourie@nwu.ac.za
  F12-106, Potchefstroom Campus
Cardiovascular structure and function and HIV as co-morbidity

Prof Carla MT Fourie is an Associate Professor in the field of Human Physiology. She teaches undergraduate students and supervises postgraduate students. Her research focusses on the development of cardiovascular disease in the South African population. Her specific interest is the influence of HIV and hypertension as co-morbidities, and markers of inflammation and oxidative stress as well as health behaviours, on vascular structure and function.

Prof Wayne Smith

Associate Professor
PhD
  +27 18 299 2053
  wayne.smith@nwu.ac.za
  F12-203,Potchefstroom campus
Cardiovascular Physiology

Prof Smith obtained his PhD in 2012 from Stellenbosch University. He has a background in experimental cardiovascular physiology, investigating cardiac function and susceptibility to ischaemia and reperfusion injury in a rodent model of obesity. After making the move to HART in 2010, he has become involved in HARTs clinical epidemiological studies. His current research interest remains in the cardiovascular field, and involve vascular function. Particular topics include 1) retinal vessel dynamics as an indicator of microvascular changes and function, and how it relates to cardiovascular risk, and 2) metabolic contributions to vascular changes associated with hypertension.

Dr Shani le Roux

Senior Lecturer
PhD in Physiology
  +27 18 285 2262
  shani.botha@nwu.ac.za
  F12-114, Potchefstroom Campus
Physiology: Inflammation and cardiovascular disease

Dr Shani le Roux is a senior lecturer and researcher in the field of Human Physiology. She teaches and supervises undergraduate and postgraduate students. Her research focusses on markers involved in the inflammatory process and the link thereof with the development of cardiovascular disease, especially in different ethnic groups.

Dr Lebo (LF) Gafane-Matemane

Senior Lecturer
PhD in Physiology
  +27 18 299 2293
  lebo.gafane@nwu.ac.za
  F12-108, Potchefstroom Campus
Renin-Angiotensin-Aldosterone System, Arterial Stiffness

Dr Gafane-Matemane is appointed as a Senior Lecturer. Her research focuses on the role of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS), salt intake and sympathetic activity in the development of hypertension and arterial stiffness. Additionally, she is also collaborating with other researchers in creating awareness in the communities regarding cardiovascular health. She is a member of the International Society of Hypertension (ISH), South African Hypertension Society (SAHS), Physiology Society of Southern Africa (PSSA), Society for Endocrinology, Metabolism and Diabetes of South Africa (SEMDSA) and Organization for Women in Science in the Developing World (OWSD).

Dr Leandi Lammertyn

Senior Lecturer, Subject leader: Physiology
PhD in Physiology, Post graduate certificate in education - FET phase
  +27 18 299 2435
  Leandi.Lammertyn@nwu.ac.za
  F12-107, Potchefstroom campus
Haemostasis, metabolic risk factors and cardiovascular disease

Dr Lammertyn investigates common modifiable metabolic, cardiovascular and lifestyle markers, as well as the prevalence and incidence of blood pressure, diabetes and dyslipidaemia that contributes to cardiovascular disease. Further interests include markers of the haemostatic system and how they relate to microvascular and macrovascular changes, especially in the South African population.

Prof Sanette (JS) Brits

Associate Professor
PhD in Physiology
  +27 18 285 2789
  10069917@nwu.ac.za
  F12-G18, Potchefstroom Campus
The effect of stress on the cardiovascular and endocrine systems

Prof Brits has a passion for creative classroom environments and community outreach projects to enhance education and health. Effective science communication through different teaching approaches can create opportunities for active participation and co-operative learning in the lecture hall. Crossing pedagogical boundaries of physiology, kinesiology and education broadened her view on teaching, learning and research.

Dr Yolandi Breet

Senior Lecturer
PhD in Physiology
  +27 18 299 2436
  21195706@nwu.ac.za
  F12-115, Potchefstroom Campus
Large artery stiffness and endothelial function

Dr Yolandi Breet is a senior lecturer and researcher in the field of cardiovascular physiology. Her research focuses on factors leading to the development of cardiovascular disease, especially in the black South African population. Her specific interests include vascular structure and function, early vascular aging as well as markers involved in the development of hypertension, especially inflammatory biomarkers. She holds a research fellow membership with the International Society of Hypertension (ISH) and is also a member of the South African Hypertension Society (SAHS), Physiology Society of Southern Africa (PSSA) and the Golden Key International Honour Society.

Dr Gontse (GG) Mokwatsi

Senior Lecturer
PhD in Physiology, Post Graduate Certificate in Education - FET phase.
  +27 18 299 2489
  22368590@nwu.ac.za
  F12-117, Potchefstroom Campus
Cardiovascular physiology

Dr Mokwatsi is appointed as a senior lecturer at the Department of Physiology and has researcher responsibilities within the Hypertension in Africa Research Team. Her research interests include the use of home blood pressure monitoring, early development of hypertension, blood pressure (morning and night-time) and arterial stiffness, especially in young South Africans. She is a member of the South African Hypertension Society (SAHS), Golden Key International Honour Society, International Society of Hypertension New Investigator Network and a research fellow with the International Society of Hypertension.

Mr Adriaan Jacobs

Lecturer
MSc in Biochemistry
  +27 18 299 2438
  13062778@nwu.ac.za
  F12-111, Potchefstroom Campus
Metabolism, cardiovascular physiology

Mr Jacobs is appointed as a lecturer at the Department of Physiology and has research responsibilities within the Hypertension in Africa Research Team. He holds an MSc in Biochemistry (with a specific focus on metabolism) and has several years of experience as a laboratory technician in diagnostic and research laboratories. As part of his PhD in Cardiovascular Physiology, his current research focuses on the association between plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 and vascular structure and function.

Prof Johannes (JM) van Rooyen

Emeritus Professor
DSc in Physiology
  +27 18 285 2455
  +27 18 299 1053
  johannes.vanrooyen@nwu.ac.za
  F11-G03, Potchefstroom Campus
Cardiovascular function, renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system, and vascular stiffness

Prof van Rooyen is a member of the Health Professions Council of South Africa as a Medical Biological Scientist. He has been a NRF rated scientist (C3) since 2004 and was the Subject Chair of Physiology in the School for Physiology, Nutrition and Consumer Sciences from 2005-2017. He participated in several projects like the PURE (Prospective Urban-Rural Epidemiology) study; SABPA (Sympathetic Activity and Ambulatory Blood Pressure in Africans) study and recently, since 2013, the African-PREDICT study of the Hypertension in Africa Research Team (HART) of the North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa. He lectures Cardiovascular Physiology to pre- and postgraduate students.

Ondersteuning

Mrs Frieda Fiellis

Administration Officer
  +27 18 299 2780
  frieda.fiellis@nwu.ac.za
  F12-204, Potchefstroom Campus

Administration Officer of the Research Director

Sr Adéle Burger

Manager: Hypertension Research and Training Clinic
MCur, BTec Occupational Health & Primary Health Care
  +27 18 299 2076
  adele.burger@nwu.ac.za
  F11-106, Potchefstroom Campus
Behaviour Changes and Lifestyle modifications for CVD prevention

Sr. Burger forms part of the team involved in the conduction of various projects within the Hypertension Research and Training Clinic on campus. Her duties include managing, coordination and training of post graduate students as well as performing measurements including blood collection ECG and 24-hour blood pressure. Her own research interests are in behaviour changes and lifestyle modifications for cardiovascular disease prevention.

Dr Lisa (AS) Uys

Subject expert
PhD in Physiology
  +27 18 299 2004
  lisa.uys@nwu.ac.za
  F11-107, Potchefstroom Campus
Autonomic control of the cardiovascular system

Dr Uys forms part of the team involved in the conduction of various projects within the Hypertension Research and Training Clinic on campus. Her duties include coordination and training of post graduate students as well as performing measurements including ECG, 24-hour blood pressure monitoring and dynamic retinal vessel analysis. Her own research interests are the involvement of various components of the autonomic nervous system in the regulation of the cardiovascular system, particularly when put under stressful situations.

Ms Anna (MA) Seboko

Junior Laboratory Helper
  +27 18 285 2261
  25187333@nwu.ac.za
  F15 / F11, 106 Potchefstroom Campus

Ms Mafoko is part of the research team working to deliver the African-PREDICT study. She supports the nurses and researchers to ensure the study runs smoothly. She is also responsible for the important task of feeding the study participants, and communicating with the participants to make sure that their contact details have stayed the same, often visiting participants houses to check if they remain at the same address.