Part 1: Dr Matjekane answers our burning questions on Covid-19

By Lifestyle reporter Time of article published Mar 30, 2020

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Nations across the globe are putting resources into researching the coronavirus. But for people on the ground, there's still much confusion as to how the virus works.

Clinimed's Dr Mathobela Matjekane is a general practitioner as well as an aesthetic practitioner. During an in-depth Q&A video, we asked Dr Matjekane the pertinent questions that South Africans are asking about Covid-19.

"The coronavirus, as we understand, is caused by droplets either when someone is coughing or sneezing or they have come into contact with someone who either touched their eyes, their nose or their mouth, and then corona comes into their system," said Dr Matjekane.

"The reason for the lockdown is to make sure we practise what is called social distancing. The necessity of social distancing is that it's going to break the chain of transmission of one person to the other," she added.

Various South African institutions are also joining the fight against the virus. Stellenbosch University (SU) and AzarGen Biotechnologies, a local biotechnology company focused on developing human therapeutic proteins using advanced genetic engineering and synthetic biology techniques in plants, have joined forces in the global fight against the coronavirus.

The collaboration will see the partners further develop SynSurf, a  to be tested as a supportive agent for the treatment of Acute/Adult Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS).

ARDS has been cited as one of the major reasons that Covid-19 patients become critically ill and sometimes die.

SynSurf was initially developed and tested (preclinically) for the treatment of neonatal Respiratory Distress Syndrome (nRDS), a condition where some premature babies struggle to breathe due to collapsed lung sacs, as well as treatment for acute lung injury in adults.

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