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Number: 2005-034-1-300

Title: Development of methodologies and protocols for documentation, evaluation of safety and efficacy and standardization of herbal medicine

Task Group
: M. Mosihuzzaman

Members: A K Azad Khan, Ermias Dagne, M Iqbal Choudhury, Bilge Sener, Gurib-Fakim Ameenah, H Wagner, G N Qazi, Mohamed H Farah, Kurt Hostettmann, Ikhlas A. Khan, and Zhu Xiaoxin

Completion Date: 2008 - project completed

Development of methodologies and protocols for the

  1. Documentation of traditional knowledge of medicine using existing information & databases and by collecting new information from traditional healers
  2. Scientific evaluation of efficacy, toxicity & dose form of herbal/traditional medicine
  3. Standardization of raw materials, intermediates and final product of herbal medicine

Herbal/traditional medicines have been playing an important role in the primary health care of the people around the world, specially in the developing countries. In order to keep pace with the modern medicines, the production of safe and effective herbal medicines in a standardized way is essential. So also is the necessity to document and preserve the traditional medical knowledge which is disappearing.With the above background the necessity of establishing a Multidisciplinary International Research Centre on Herbal Medicine was felt.

The present Project is submitted for moving forward in fulfilling the following aims for creating the knowledge base necessary as a first step towards establishing such a Centre:

  • a) Development of methodologies and appropriate protocols for carrying out systematic and proper documentation of the existing available knowledge of traditional and folkloric medicines, collecting new information from traditional healers and compiling them into an easily accessible format;
  • b) Preparation of proper scientific screening protocols for evaluating existing herbal/traditional medicines and other preparations for their efficacy, toxicity (if any) and dose forms using both in-vitro and in-vivo procedures; and
  • c) Development of well formatted methods for standardization of raw materials, intermediate products and final preparations of herbal medicine using latest techniques like NMR, HPLC, GC etc which can be utilized for fingerprinting of active principles in a plant material or products derived from them.

The project will be implemented through electronic communication and finally by holding a Workshop in May-June 2006 in Dhaka, Bangladesh for outlining the methodologies and protocols on the three areas mentioned.

Once these methodologies and protocols are in place a nucleus for work for the Centre can begin and financial assistance can be sought from international agencies and other interested organizations involved in the production of herbal medicine or in drug development from natural sources. The knowledge acquired will be available for natural product research directed to the development of new chemical entities into therapeutic agents.

With support from the local scientists, the Task Group Chairman discussed the matter with a number of reputed scientists in Europe and America and received enthusiastic support. This was demonstrated in the IUPAC supported Workshop in January 2004 in New Delhi. Later, the proposal of setting up an International Centre for Natural Product Research with emphasis on herbal medicine has been discussed in various forums including those of IUPAC, specially with the Organic and Biomolecular Division in Beijing in August 2005.

With co-sponsored by the Bangladesh Academy of Science, a workshop of the task group was held on 6-9 June 2006 in Dhaka, Bangladesh. > Meeting Minutes (pdf file -17KB)

Oct 2008 - Project completed - Technical Report published in Pure Appl. Chem., 2008, Vol. 80, No. 10, pp. 2195-2230

Last update: 4 November 2008

<project announcement published in Chem. Int. May-June 2006>

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Page last modified 4 November 2008.
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