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Professor Vivienne Russell - PSSA



Professor Vivienne Russell

Professor Vivienne Russell

Professor Vivienne Russell

Prof. Russell is in the department of human Biology at the university of cape town, and is also a fractional professor in the School of laboratory medicine and medical Science at the college of health Sciences, university of Kwazulu-natal. her research field is neuroscience in which she focuses on animal models of brain disorders. projects include studies of attention- deficit/hyperactivity disorder (adhd), parkinson’s disease and the effect of stress and exercise on the brain. in more recent years, she focused on the problem of neuroenergetics and the consequences in terms of brain disorders when the energy supply to functioning neuronal networks is compromised.
Prof Russell is internationally recognised for her research contributions; with over 140 peer- reviewed journal publications, 8 chapters in books, extensive international research collaborations and has presented at countless local and international conference proceedings. She is also the currently chair of the Scientific committee of the international Brain research organization (iBro) african center for advanced training in neuroscience at the university of cape town.
when asked what her motivation for choosing neuroscience as her field of research was, she eloquently articulated: “I was motivated by a desire to understand why humans do what we do. The
brain with its connections to nearly every part of the body is remarkable and presents an unequalled challenge with the promise to significantly enhance our understanding of life.” her success, she says has always been based on team effort, and even more she says that her success is foremost shared with her students and her collaborators across the globe. She believes that her achievements would not have been possible without her “wonderful” students, lab
assistants, and collaborators.
When asked what the future holds for her in research, she stated lightheartedly: “I am pleased to say that there is life after retirement.” She enjoys her role as a mentor to the postgraduate students and junior faculty at the university of cape town (uct) and the university of Kwazulu-Natal. finding the work very rewarding; she hopes to continue in this role for some time into the future. her dedication to the field of neuroscience has kept prof russell very busy over the years and left very little room for other interests. Yet even with her demanding schedule she has played pivotal roles in the organising and as an instructor in the neuroscience schools for postgraduate students and junior faculty, supported by the international Brain research organization (iBro) and has worked tirelessly in promoting neuroscience training in africa for many years. over and above this; she is also part of the committee organizing an advanced school on epilepsy at UCT in December 2015.