Dr Hugo Tempelman is awarded with an Honorary Doctorate

On Monday, 6 September 2021, Dr Hugo Tempelman was awarded with an Honorary Doctorate from Utrecht University in recognition of the enormous impact of his work on science and society, demonstrating how crucial science is in tackling the everyday challenges in a low socio-economic environment.

This award is a true reflection of the hard work and amazing contributions that Dr Tempelman and the Ndlovu Care Group have made in the community of Moutse, in Limpopo, South Africa, for more than 20 years. Providing healthcare and support services to orphans, vulnerable children, people living with disability, HIV patients and the needy in an effort to improve the economic and living conditions of the community at large. The Ndlovu Research Department has also played a major role in the contributions of Dr Tempelman through ground-breaking academic research and trials which are constantly translated into policy documents to improve treatment guidelines and patient care.

Thermo Fisher Next Generation Sequencing Training

Ndlovu Scientists completed a week-long training on the use and maintenance of the Thermo Fisher Genexus sequencer. Ndlovu Laboratories can now begin contributing towards whole genome surveillance of SARS-CoV-2 and monitoring of variants.

Successful completion of training for Genexus Sequencer
Ndlovu Scientists ready to begin Sequencing 
Ndlovu Scientists preparing for their first SARS-CoV-2 sequencing run
Ndlovu Scientists preparing for their first SARS-CoV-2 sequencing run


Ndlovu Medical Centre started vaccination roll out on the 12th July 2021 and is still ongoing to date. We have vaccinated approximately 22 728 clients up to 26 August 2021.

Nurse Preparing Pfizer vaccine for the client, Ndlovu Medical Centre, Dennilton, Elandsdoorn
Ndlovu Medical Centre, Dennilton, Elandsdoorn -Vaccination Roll out Overview Picture

Handing over of the Next Generation Sequencer

On the 12th of August 2021 the handing over of the next generation sequencing equipment, the Thermo Fisher Genexsus took place at Ndlovu Research Centre.

There were representatives from the German Embassy, GIZ and NICD present to celebrate this important expansion in our research laboratory. Variant studies for COVID-19 and the development, tracking and discovering of the these variants are going to be an important part of the SARS-CoV-2 virus development and how to control the epidemic. The Network for Genomic Surveillance in South Africa (NGS-SA) has no Laboratory in the three Northern Provinces and with this generous donation by GIZ (German Development Cooperation) Ndlovu Research Laboratory can add to this important program.

Dr Andrea Knigge, GIZ:  “It is a pleasure to work together with the Department of Health and Ndlovu Research Centre. It is fantastic to observe that such PPPs work and bear fruit. The implantation of the Genexsus Sequencer is a major step forward in the control and development of the Pandemic in South Africa.”

Covid Testing

The Molecular Laboratory Section at Ndlovu Research Laboratory contributes in a major way to the control of COVID-19.

The SARS-CoV-2 PCR testing is a major functionality the Ndlovu Research Laboratory has, contributing to the diagnostics in our area. The PCR testing is not only offered as an assistance to the National Health Laboratory Services (for which our lab is an overflow lab) but also to the mining industry to keep COVID-19 out of the workplace. It is a major contribution we can provide to control of the spread of COVID-19. With the assistance of GIZ (German Development Cooperation) and two local South African Mines, Ndlovu has been enabled to perform up to 1500-2000 PCR tests per day.

The equipment is fortunately very versatile and can also be used for PCR testing of HIV (Viral Load monitoring) and other PCR tests for viruses.

Since June 2021 our SARS-CoV-2 PCR test panel has been expanded with Flu A & B, RSV and Adenoviruses in order to distinguish between COVID-19 and a “common Flu”. Very useful as South Africa is currently in winter and a lot of patients have flu symptoms imitating COVID-19. With these Multi panels, we are able to distinguish between these diagnoses.

Community Advisory Group (CAG)

Ndlovu Research Centre (NRC) has 16 CAG Members that ensures community is educated and informed about all NRC activities. The CAG was established in 2014. They are a link between the NRC and community, advice NRC staff on both cultural and language to be used in Program Materials. CAG also advise and assist in recruitment of potential participants. All community plans are shared with CAG and they are involved in implementation of the planned activities. CAG members receive Protocol training to eradicate any myths that might arise in the community. CAG meets with study staff monthly to share study updates and any misconceptions that arises in the community.

Fully functional lab

Construction on our molecular biology and diagnostics lab is complete and the lab is now fully functional. Ndlovu Laboratories now comprises more than 7 operational sections including Chemistry, Hematology, Serology, Rapid Testing, Molecular Diagnostics, PBMC Processing and SARS-CoV-2 Sequencing. This unprecedented infrastructure in the heart of rural Limpopo has become a research oasis that is constantly improving the lives and livelihood of surrounding communities and beyond.

Construction Ndlovu Research Laboratory

In May 2019 the wonderful approval to upgrade our Research Laboratory was given.

The AHC2 Foundation, the AIDS Fonds and The AmsterdamDinner Foundation make a dream come through. Ndlovu Research Department  has started on its upgrade to a full-fledged Molecular Laboratory which will grant us to more extensive research in virology and immunology. Ndlovu Research Department also engaged in a relationship with a Korean Company called Seegene Pty Ltd fto further specific molecular research on a multi PCR platform.

All very excited steps forward to mature our laboratory and to further especialy HIV related studies.

It is expected that the deliverance of all equipment will be realised before the end of Q3, 2019 and that the lab will then be functional.

Hopefully NRC will one day also be able to say : “That small steps for men, mean huge steps forward for mankind”.