28 No. 3
Herbal Medicine—Development of Methodologies and Protocols for Documentation, Evaluation of Safety and Efficacy, and Standardization
Herbal medicine has long played an important role in the primary healthcare of people around the world, especially those in third-world countries. As herbal medicine gains popularity in developed countries, the safety and efficacy of over-the-counter herbal drugs and other preparations are being scrutinized. The need for documentation and preservation of age-old knowledge of herbal medicine is also a matter of concern. In this context it is considered necessary to establish a Multidisciplinary International Research Center on Herbal Medicine.
As a first step towards this goal, a project has been undertaken to develop appropriate methodologies and protocols for documentation, evaluation of safety and efficacy, and standardization of herbal treatments. These internationally acceptable protocols will form the knowledge base for the establishment of the proposed research center. The documents, once posted on the IUPAC Web site, will be of tremendous value to scientists studying herbal medicine, as well as to producers of herbal preparations. A task group has been created, with members from countries around the globe. This group will work together electronically to develop the necessary protocols and will then meet in Dhaka, Bangladesh, in June 2006. The task group chairman will then take the necessary steps to publish the methodologies and protocols in IUPAC-accepted formats in such a manner as to make them accessible to the largest possible number of people.
For more information and to submit comments, contact Task Group Chairman Mohammed Mosihuzaman <[email protected]>.
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