Professor Albert Neitz
Prof Albert Neitz is a Professor in the Department of Biochemistry at the University of Pretoria.
His main research interests are in tick research with regards to antigens for use in the development in anti-tick vaccines (ATV). These include antihemostatics, toxins and enzymes from tick tissue. Antimicrobial peptides investigated by Dr Anabella Gaspar, who is co- investigator in the ATV programme, may also be ATV candidates. Proteomics techniques are now being introduced into this research programme. The application of bioinformatics in the tick research programme has led to a first-time discovery: anticoagulants and toxins of the soft tick, Ornithodoros savignyican be grouped into two distinct and extensively described protein families.
This breakthrough discovery has provided a link between tick proteins and a wealth of protein structure-activity and three-dimensional structural information as well as evolutionary relationships. Bioinformatics, therefore, has laid a significant framework for the design of tick-specific drugs and/or vaccines and application in human thrombocytic disorders.
Prof Albert Neitz, Tel: +27 12 420 2990/2906, Fax: +27 12 362 5302