Karachi: “Infectious diseases continue to be a global concern, causing about 25 per cent of the total deaths occurring worldwide.” These views were expressed by national and international scientists, while speaking on Monday on the second day of the 4-day 14th Asian Symposium on Medicinal Plants, Spices and Other Natural Products (ASOMPS) being held at the International Center for Chemical and Biological Sciences (ICCBS), Karachi University (KU).
The speakers said the incidents are significantly higher in the developing countries with growing population burden and poor sanitation. The drugs of plant origin have served the ages as the mainstay in the treatment of human ailments and preservation of health. There is dire need to carry out more research work on medicinal plants for developing more effective remedies for the treatment of various diseases. The importance of natural products, particularly those derived from plants for drug discovery research and development grew with time.”
Around 600 national and foreign scientists and researchers are participating in the symposium, which is considered as one of the most prestigious international events in the field of natural product sciences. The aim of the symposium is to bring together the leading experts in the field of natural products sciences from all around the world and form global partnership for sustainable utilization of natural resources for the common benefits of humanity and rapid development of the countries in the south.
Indian scientist Dr. Bansari Hazra, in his plenary lecture, said that regrettably the pace of antibiotic discovery have failed to counteract the propagation of microbial drug resistance, hence, new strategies are required to control bacterial infections without further delay. Thus, plant products, either as pure compounds or as standardized plant extracts, could be of great significance particularly for countries like India, he added.
Dr. Hameed Khan of USA said that the drugs of plant origin have served the ages in the treatment of human ailments, while most of the indigenous medicine began as myth but developed with time as the complex science of modern medicine.
Dr. Yu Bin, Dr. Ashoke Banerjee, Dr. Muhammad Iqbal Bhangar, Dr. Darakhshan Haleem also spoke on the occasion.