Prof Francis E Smit is the current Head of the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the University of the Free State in Bloemfontein, South Africa. He trained and qualified as a cardiac surgeon in Bloemfontein (1991) and did post graduate training in London UK with Marc De Leval and Donald Ross. His clinical interests are paediatric and adult cardiac surgery. Clinical Research interests include rheumatic heart disease, infective endocarditis, CABG in acute coronary syndrome and advanced pulmonary artery disease in congenital cardiac surgery. Active basic sciences research programs focus on the development valve substitutes for the developing world. This includes cryopreservation and decellularization of allografts and polyurethane valve substitutes. Prof Smit is also active in population and surveillance studies and the development of cardiac services in Africa

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