by admin admin No Comments

29 year old University of the Western Cape PhD Student, Shireen Mentor, earned the honour of being named one of the world’s top young scientists.

One of 6 SA female scientists selected by the SA Academy of science, Shireen joined more than 500 undergraduates and PhD students from around the world to engage with 30 Nobel Laureates in Lindau, Germany.

As a result of her research into the disease of addiction within the Cape Flats communities in and around her home suburb and neighbouring areas, Shireen was awarded a Fullbright Scholarship and will be heading off soon to the University of Missouri for nine months.

“My original research was situated squarely within the context of substance abuse. My neighbourhood, like many others in the greater Cape Town, experiences high levels of substance abuse, in particular methamphetamine – and this inspired me to look at the science behind it.

“In my honours year I investigated the effects of methamphetamine on the blood-brain barrier (BBB) permeability, since the mechanism may be linked to the integrity of the BBB, which regulates the movement of ions, pathogens, and an array of harmful substances across brain capillaries, protecting the cognitive integrity of the central nervous system.

“UWC has been my stepping stone in many respects. I’m looking forward to learning more about how my research may one day be able to make a meaningful contribution to treating addiction.”

Shireen has already been published in leading scientific journals and was the first recipient of the Wyndham Prize from the Physiology Society of Southern Africa in 2014

Source: News 24, UWC,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *