Researching Medicinal Plants in Botswana

Recently I visited the lab of a researcher at University of Botswana whose aim is to find plants that can be used to treat illnesses among humans and animals.  He showed me three different labs.  The first had small glass bottles with dark orange dried plant material in a thin film around the bottles.  He … Continue reading

Women’s Health in Southern Africa

A reality of southern Africa is the high rate of HIV/AIDS infections among the regional population. Swaziland and Botswana are the two countries with the highest (in the world) rates of HIV among their populations. Interestingly, many women are also showing up with cervical cancer. During the recent National Hiv/Aids, Sexually Transmitted Infections and Other … Continue reading

cassia abbreviata may help people with hiv

I learned today of a plant- cassia abbreviata- that is thought to decrease viral loads for people with hiv. Basically, there is only anecdotal evidence, but researchers met with a traditional healer in Botswana, and they tested the plant, and the results show that it decreases the amount of the virus in a person’s body. … Continue reading

infertility in botswana

A couple of weeks ago, Rebecca Upton gave a presentation of her 15 years of medical anthropology research in Botswana regarding infertility.  She is an American researcher who was invited to speak in Gaborone by Kathleen Toomey, the current director of BOTUSA, the partnership between the Center for Disease Control and the government of Botswana. … Continue reading