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Popularise traditional medicine, says VC

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MEMENTO: N. Ramachandran (left), Vice-Chancellor of Periyar Maniammai University, presenting a memento to L. Kamal Batcha, Managing Director, National Pharma, Thanjavur at the national seminar on ’Herbal Plant Biotechnology’ in the university on Thursday. —
MEMENTO: N. Ramachandran (left), Vice-Chancellor of Periyar Maniammai University, presenting a memento to L. Kamal Batcha, Managing Director, National Pharma, Thanjavur at the national seminar on ’Herbal Plant Biotechnology’ in the university on Thursday. —

Special Correspondent

National seminar on Herbal Plant Biotechnology organised

THANJAVUR: Eighty per cent of the world population relies on traditional medicines for primary health care according to a report of the World Health Organisation (WHO), said N.Ramachandran, Vice-Chancellor of Periyar Maniammai University, here on Thursday.

Speaking at the inauguration of GENOMERA 09, a two-day national seminar on Herbal Plant Biotechnology organised by the Department of Biotechnology at Periyar Maniammai University, Dr.Ramachandran said that scientists and technocrats should popularise traditional medicine among people.

“Herbal medicine is a gold mine for India as the country is rich in medicinal herbs. Traditional medicine in India is thousands of years old and we should not borrow from others. Every biotechnology student should try to become an entrepreneur instead of seeking employment.

Dr.Ramachandran released a souvenir on the occasion. L. Kamal Batcha, Managing Director of National Pharma, who was the chief guest, received the first copy. Mr. Batcha said that many of the country’s medicinal plants were taken by foreigners and used for producing medicine. “We import the same medicine and use it.”

Examples are the neem, Vinca Rosea herbs and Raolphia Serpentina. German scientists prepared medicines from these herbs.

“We have lost a large number of medicinal herbs. Now it is our duty to protect them. Foreigners claim rights to our intellectual property,” Mr.Batcha said.

Ayurveda provided natural healing. A book, Sarabendra Vaidya Ratnavali, available at Saraswathi Mahal Library at Thanjavur gave details about Ayurveda system.

A.P.Aruna, Chief Executive Officer, Periyar Technology Incubator (PTI) said it provided entrepreneurship opportunities for biotechnology students to develop herbal products.

PTI has a lot of technologies, funding support and market linkage for any innovative product from herbal biotechnology. Services offered by the PTI include promotion of start-up companies in phyto-pharmaceuticals and neutraceuticals.

PTI has formational units, quality testing and standardisation laboratory, preclinical and clinical trials for new drugs, tissue culture facility, furnished incubation sheds, etc.

S.Aiswarya Devi, final year student of Biotechnology, welcomed the gathering. M.Kalaivani, second year student of Biotechnology, proposed a vote of thanks.

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