A   c o m p l e m e n t a r y   p a r t n e r s h i p   i n   n a t u r a l   p r o d u c t   s c i e n c e


Southern African Biochemistry and Informatics for Natural Products


To to proactively implement post-graduate chemistry/biochemistry programmes, including bioinformatics - an essential tool for data management and the structure-function elucidation of natural products. Through these programmes SABINA develops and strengthens networks that integrate chemical and biological sciences in key Southern African Development Community (SADC) universities.

Network Partners

The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), the Tea Research Foundation of Central Africa (TRFCA), and the Universities of Dar es Salaam, Malawi, Namibia, Pretoria, and the Witwatersrand.

The African Centre for Gene Technologies (ACGT) provides technical backstopping support, and co-ordination between the South African partners.


SABINA is funded by The Carnegie Corporation of New York as a Regional Initiative in Science and Education (RISE) for the African Continent.

Key Focus Areas

  • Natural Products Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Synthetic Chemistry
  • Bioinformatics
  • Food Science
  • Molecular Biology/Functional Genomics
  • Read more about the Activities, Key Outputs, Biological Resources, Applications, and Technologies.


    Significant innovations are emerging from the students' research - some of which may lead to commercialisation.

    Students are expected to publish in accredited international journals and to present their research findings at local and international conferences. In addition to attending workshops/short courses, students must spend 25-50% of their time in the laboratory/ies of at least one of the supervising partner institutions. Provision is also made for secondments to advanced laboratories in South Africa and elsewhere.

    MSc and PhD students may register at any of the network partner institutions. Acceptance depends on the availability of an appropriate supervisor and co-supervisor from the network partner institutions. It is envisaged that 12 PhD and 10 MSc students will have graduated from the Programme by the end of 2014.

    Current Students | Training Plan


      The SABINA Secretariat is led and co-ordinated, respectively, by the Academic Director Dr John Becker and Project Manager Mrs Jessika Naidoo at the African Centre for Gene Technologies (ACGT), University of Pretoria.