I have wanted to share some information on the work I am doing at H3-D however; understandably confidentiality agreements prevent me from divulging specifics. I can say that I am busy in the lab synthesizing additional analogues of the clinical candidate MMV350048 in the diarylaminopyridine series. The clinical candidate looks strong none the less we are looking for a back-up molecule which does not closely resemble MMV350048. Unfortunately I have not yet managed to retain activity in the new areas that I have explored, none the less I will continue to probe in the hope of success.
This year my colleagues in H3-D and I have opted to support the Santa Shoebox Project. The project aims to provide Christmas gifts to 100,000 under-privileged children throughout South Africa and Namibia. Each shoebox must be packed with essentials such as toiletries and school supplies plus some fun items such as an outfit, a toy and some sweets. We have pledged 12 boxes, 6 for boys and 6 for girls. Please find below photos of my friend Claire and I hard at work decorating the shoeboxes, (it can get pretty chilly here).
Today, Tuesday 24th September South Africa celebrates National Heritage Day. On Heritage Day South Africans are encouraged to come together to celebrate the rich cultural heritage and the diversity of the rainbow nation in attempt to foster reconciliation and promote the notion that variety is a national asset as opposed to a reason for conflict. A recent initiative by Braai4Heritage calls upon all South Africans to celebrate their common roots by having a braai (barbecue) on Heritage Day as South Africa has a strong culinary tradition of holding informal backyard barbecues. In 2007 Archbishop Desmond Tutu was made the national spokesperson for “Braai Day,” he has since been quoted as saying; “We all gather round one fire…it’s a fantastic thing, a very simple idea. Irrespective of your politics, of your culture, of your race…just South Africans doing one thing together, and recognizing that we are a fantastic nation.” I did not receive an invitation for a braai however I am sure I will still enjoy the day as I am about to head out for wine tasting in the Constantia region followed by a hike in the Table Mountain National Park with friends Julian and Claire.