Natural Product Research & Development in Uganda: The Opportunities & Challenges. By Francis Omujal

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1 Natural Product Research & Development in Uganda: The Opportunities & Challenges By Francis Omujal Natural Chemotherapeutics Research Lab (NCRL) Sub-Regional Stakeholder Consultation for Eastern Africa Nairobi, Kenya, th May 2009

2 Outline of presentation Introduction Background of NCRL Natural product Research & development in Uganda Opportunities in Natural products Research Challenges in Natural Product Research Conclusion

3 Introduction Natural Products (NP) are vital components of biodiversity for PHC and livelihoods : medicinal plants, indigenous fruits, oil and fat etc Worldwide the demand for natural products for nutrition, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals are on increase. Demand for MP was about US $ 14 billion dollars and projected to US $ 5 Trillion by 2050 (WHO) With emerging diseases such as malaria and HIV/AIDS MP provide solutions.

4 Introduction The WHO has estimated that up to 80% of the population in Africa relies TM for health needs. MP are traded as leaves, bark, and roots in form of powders, extracts, tonics, pills, teas Promotion of R & D can enhance their commercialization

5 Background of NCRL NCRL is, dept at the MOH, created in 1964 Original focus was to isolate ingredient for pharmaceutical companies. But currently, its involved R & D of natural products for health products. Comprises of botany, chemistry and pharmacology sections

6 Background of NCRL The Vision is to be A Center of Excellence for Scientific Research and Development. The Mission is to: Research, develop and promote quality natural products and services for improved Health Care and Economic Development by applying Indigenous and Modern Technologies through Collaborative Efforts.

7 Background of NCRL Broad Priorities (Focus Areas) Natural Product Development Medicinal Bio-diversity Conservation Herbal Health Care Delivery Systems Integration of Herbal Medicine into National Health Care Systems Institutional Capacity Development

8 R&D of Natural products in Uganda A number of standardized herbal products on the market. Over 5000 MP species have been botanically documented 50 endangered MP conserved To improve the commercialization of herbal products, they are lab tested and forwarded to National Drug Authority (NDA) for notification (pre-registration)

9 R&D of Natural products in Uganda -KIPO herbal cream for skin infections -Avocine caffeine free beverage -Product for sickle cell patients -Product for surgical conditions/wounds/burns Herbal products that have been developed in NCRL:

10 R&D of Natural products in Uganda Medicinal Plants include among others Warbugia salutaris, Prunus africana, Holunsdia opposite, bidens pilosa, Aloe vera, Ticlea nobilis, Azadirachta indica Vernonia amygdalina, Phylanthus sp. Carica papaya etc. Vegetable oil: Moringa oleifera, Vitellaria paradoxa (Shea butter Essential oils: Cymbopogon citrus (lemon grass), Ocimum suave, Eucalyptus, Citronella, Rose mary

11 R&D of Natural products in Uganda Priority Diseases: Malaria, Cough/ flu/ colds, Sickle cell, Diabetic, Asthma, Hypertensive (High blood pressure), Fibroid cases, Skin infections (bacteria & fungal infections), Aphrodiatics, HIV/AIDS etc

12 R&D of Natural products in Uganda Ethnobotanical surveys, plant identification, herbarium specimens and finger printing Sample collection, processing, storage-qc Botany Research Ensure sustainability through conservation and cultivation

13 R&D of Natural products in Uganda Chemistry Research Lab: Phytochemistry Extraction of plant extract Isolated cpd and TLC finger print Isolated active Cpd and Uv sp finger print

14 R&D of Natural products in Uganda Pharmacological Research -Toxicity and side effects profiling -Efficacy profile -Bioavailability and Dose determination -Prototype development-formulation studies, stability studies and quality control- Levels of heavy metals, microbial level, pesticide levels,

15 R&D of Natural products in Uganda Herbal formula Day one after bandage remove After two weeks of application of herbal formula Complete wound healing after 3 wks of herbal formula application One month of treatment with Herbal formulation Clinical trial: wound healing with herbal formula

16 Opportunities in NP Research Large market & source of income for the population Growing demand for authentic herbal Emerging diseases HIV/AIDs, diabetes, cancer, HPB etc, they provide alternative Vast indigenous knowledge in books, journals, communities to used in devt, of natural products In Uganda there is political support in the area of Natural products - Inadequacies and side effects of synthetic drugs and products promotes natural products

17 Challalenges un sustainable utilisation is creating excessive loses of natural products Poor Product quality ( packaging, labelling, product attributes etc) There are inadequate resources for natural product R &D (Capital investment -skilled Human resource and finance) The existing national policies for R &D for natural product R &D and commercialisation are weak. Support by relevant government to promote Natural product development is limited.

18 Challenges Limited information ( scientific, commercial etc) Intellectual property Right Incase of medicinal plants, there is bias mind of Biomedical health workers. Demand for natural product has brought quack practitioners in natural product sector

19 Conclusion Promotion of natural product research and development and commercialization can enhance livelihood of the people in Africa

20 THANK YOU

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