Centre For Medicinal Plants Research

The Centre for Medicinal Plants Research (CMPR) was established by Arya Vaidya Sala (AVS) Kottakkal in 2002 with the financial support from Sir Dorabji Tata Trust (SDTT), Mumbai to function as an Institute for Research, Education, Conservation and Popularization of Medicinal Plants used in Ayurveda and other traditional systems of medicines. His Excellency Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, the then President of India inaugurated the Centre on September 25, 2003, in the presence of Sri. A. K. Antony, the then Chief Minister of Kerala, Prof. M. S. Swaminathan, the world renowned Agricultural Scientist and many other dignitaries.

The Centre has successfully completed more than 35 projects funded by various Governmental and Non-Governmental funding agencies like DBT, ICMR, NMPB, DST, Tata Trusts, AYUSH, KSCSTE, NABARD, SMPB etc. aimed at strengthening the Ayurvedic knowledge base with inputs from modern disciplines of science. CMPR has been recognized as the ‘Centre of Excellence by the Ministry of AYUSH, Govt. of India. The work done at this Centre is being published by ICMR in series of the book ‘Quality Standards of Indian Medicinal Plants’ and Ministry of AYUSH in its Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia series. The Centre also has to its credit several articles published in peer reviewed national and international scientific journals / books / in seminar / symposia proceedings.

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CMPR - The Important Thrust Areas

  • Enlarging the resource base of medicinal plants through conservation, cultivation and popularization activities.

  • Evolving reference standards of the raw materials used in the Ayurvedic system using pharmacognostic, phytochemical and molecular tools and make the same available to Ayurvedic medicine manufacturers of the country for checking adulteration and substitution.

  • Scientific validation of traditional knowledge for development of evidence based herbal medicines.

  • To function as a Centre for education and training on different disciplines of science to post-graduate/M.Phil/PhD students from various educational institutions.

Three major divisions with well-equipped laboratories

  • Crop Improvement and Biotechnology
  • Pharmacognosy
  • Phytochemistry

Pharmacognosy division

The division engaged in various research activities for the authentication and standardization of medicinal plants and raw materials being used in Ayurvedic system of Medicine by means of various botanical tools. Division is having lab facilities and equipments for the taxonomical and anatomical characterization of medicinal plants.

Major objectives of the division include:

  • Collection of genetic resources and genuine raw drugs from various natural sources for the enhancement and maintenance of Herbarium and Raw drug repository.

  • Taxonomic and pharmacognostic authentication of medicinal plants.
  • Developing pharmacognostic standards of medicinal plants and raw materials and documenting the data in HERBAS, a software for herb authentication.
  • Market sample analysis of raw materials to seize adulteration and to ensure the quality of Ayurvedic preparations.
  • Developing a database of medicinal plants and their pharmacognostic data as a ready reckoner to check adulteration of marketed raw drugs.

Phytochemistry Division

  • Division is well equipped with sophisticated instruments like HPTLC, HPLC, GC/MS, Q-TOF-LC/MS etc.

The main focus areas of Phytochemistry Division are:

  • Phytochemical characterization of medicinal plants and studies on secondary metabolites.

  • Scientific validation of traditional knowledge and drug development.

  • Optimization of methods for the judicious/sustainable utilization of raw materials in herbal industry.

  • Ingredient analysis and high throughput screening of herbal formulations and development of standardized extract/ herbal functional food for the management of specific diseases like Cancer, neuro degenerative diseases and liver diseases.

  • Phytochemistry Division, in association with Clinical Research and Product Development Department of AVS, is involved in collaborative research in the area of Cancer and Ministry of AYUSH, Govt. of India has sanctioned a centre of Excellence project in Cancer Research recently.

  • The Covid-19 research for evaluating the efficacy of newly developed Ayurvedic formulations against SARS Corona virus 2 in collaboration with CSIR-Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderabad, was initiated in 2020.

  • Division is also engaged in various collaborative research projects with national and international institutes like University of Johannesburg, South Africa, All India Institute of Ayurveda, New Delhi, All India Institute of Medical sciences, New Delhi, CSIR-Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderabad, CSIR-CFTRI, Mysore, CSIR-NIIST, Thiruvananthapuram etc.

Crop Improvement & Biotechnology

The major objectives are focused for enhancing medicinal plant resource base and authentication of medicinal plants using DNA markers. The division has well equipped Tissue Culture and Molecular Biology Laboratories.

The major research programmes include:

  • Developing improved conventional and tissue culture propagation technologies in medicinal plants.

  • Identification of promising genotypes for higher yield and quality through selection from seedling progeny and germplasm.

  • Extension activities through establishing liaison with various partner agencies / growers / farmers, conduct public awareness programmes and training to disseminate medicinal plants related information, quality planting material production and distribution to farmers, etc for popularization of medicinal plants cultivation, conservation, cultivation and sustainable utilization.

  • Facilitating marketing of raw materials through buy back agreement with farmers.

  • Authentication of medicinal plants through development of DNA barcode standards, linking the standard DNA barcodes with specimen vouchers and making it available at CMPR herbarium for future reference, development of a software platform (HeBaCo: Herbal barcodes), validation of the DNA Barcoding in market samples of raw drugs, etc.

More than a Century of Health Care Tradition ...

More than a Century of Health Care Tradition ...

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Vaidyaratnam P S Varier's Arya Vaidya Sala,
Head office, Kottakkal (PO), Malappuram (Dist.),
Kerala - 676 503, INDIA
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