Affiliated Institutions

Experimental Station of Medicinal Plants
(Director) Prof. Mikihisa Takano (Vice-Director) Associate Prof. Sachiko Yamano

At the Experimental Station of Medicinal Plants, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, we conduct extensive research through analyzing extracted components from various kind of medicinal plants cultivated in the Experimental Station.

Medical plants are defined as plants with medicinal efficacy. Even ginger or jujube, which is taken as a food in daily life, has drug effects, and is used in the prescription of traditional Chinese medicine.

■History of medicinal plants and traditional Chinese medicine

For thousands of years, humans have been using plants to cure their ailments. Thus, medicinal plants are thought to be a root of medicine. Specifically, traditional Chinese medicine, which is made up of a number of herbs, minerals and animal extracts, are used in Chinese medical treatment. The medicinal treatment, started in China, has been developed also in Japan and Korea. The phrase of “Kampo” has been used and practiced since Edo Period (1603-1868) when European medicine was introduced to Japan by Dutch.

At the time, the education from Dutch was called “Rangaku” and its western medicinal treatment was identified as “Rampo”, while the treatment, introduced from China and developed in Japan, was differentiated as “Kampo”.

■Pharmaceutical botany -a growing demand for a wide range of knowledge

At present, pharmaceutical botany has widened its field of work centering on medicinal parts.

For example, the components of medicinal plants may differ depending on climate and soil conditions of the areas where they are naturally grown, even if they are classified into the same species. Classifying harvested plants is an integral element for the systematic botany, and the selection and cultivation of the plants having many active ingredients are important in the field of agriculture.

Furthermore, there is no problem if the medicinal plants can be produced in large numbers, but if not, reproductive cloning system must be established. This involves other research fields such as genetic engineering. Moreover, those containing narcotic components are examined its effect on the human body in collaboration with forensic medicine.

Please feel its secret power at Experimental Station of Medicinal Plants.