African Natural Products Network (RISE-AFNNET)

African Natural Products Network

In the face of rapid population growth, loss of agricultural lands, and insufficient human capacity, RISE-AFNNET works to develop Africa’s rich biodiversity into a natural products industry of social and economic significance. Building on an already active research network of 10 member countries called NAPRECA, RISE-AFNNET expands existing research programs and formalizes educational activities in such natural products (NP) fields as engineering, biochemistry, environmental science, pharmacology, economic development and nutrition. Students work on natural products research projects in the context of poverty alleviation, gender equity, and the Millennium Development Goals.
University of Nairobi
Makerere University
Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA)

Seminar on Traditional Chinese Medicine for Anglophone African Countries

13 October - 11 November 2014

Recent graduate of RISE-AFNNET Dr. James Kuria (pictured above) was nominated to attend a seminar on traditional Chinese medicine by the Ministry of Devolution and Planning through KEMRI. He was sponsored by the Economic and Commercial Ministry of the People’s Republic of China and Xiyuan Hospital of the China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences (CSCMS).
The seminar gave the participants a theoretical background and introduced them to some clinical applications of TCM, including basic training in pharmacological and non-pharmacological approaches to therapy. Some of the key areas covered included:
  1. Fundamental theory of TCM

  2. Diagnosis and syndrome differentiation in TCM

  3. Clinical application of acupuncture

  4. Clinical application of therapeutic massage (tuina)

  5. Nutrition and medicinal diets

  6. Functional foods

  7. TCM in the management of partial chronic diseases

  8. Progress of integrative medicine in China
The training included 27 participants from a number of English-speaking African countries. The facilitators were practicing TCM clinicians and academics. It highlighted the success of traditional medical sciences, especially the integration of traditional medicine and Western medicine.
These learning points are key in the development of African native medicines and their integration into primary healthcare for the betterment of human health. The seminar opened up doors for collaboration with the China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences.