Institute of Medicinal Plant Development (IMPLAD),
affiliated with the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences (CAMS) and Peking Union Medical College (PUMC), was established in August 1983. Although the institute’s main headquarters are located in the Zhongguancun Scientific and Technical Zone, Beijing, it also has three growing areas totaling over 5000 Mu of land in the subtropical regions of southern China, respectively located in Yunnan, Hainan and Guangxi Provinces. As one of five well-known institutes specializing in medicinal plant research around the world, it plays a leading role in research into Chinese medicinal herbs.
IMPLAD is dedicated to protecting, developing and utilizing medicinal plant resources by means of modern scientific technology. As a participating member of the National Program for the Modernization and Industrialization of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the institute undertakes the important tasks of preserving the germplasm resources of Chinese medicinal plants, protecting rare and endangered species, developing and implementing the policies seen in the Good Agricultural Practice (GAP), researching reference standards for TCM and conducting surveys of medicinal herb resources.
IMPLAD has a staff of 680 individuals, including 1 member of the Chinese Academy of Engineering (CAE), and 150 professors and associate professors ─ five of whom have been awarded the title “National Outstanding Scientist”. Fifty of these professors and associate professors supervise a total of 120 research postgraduates and also number among themselves many world famous experts, including the founder of pharmacophylogenetics, Professor XIAO Peigen (member of CAE, also called “the living TCM dictionary”). IMPLAD’s team of highly qualified TCM scientists and ambitious young researchers also includes other well-known experts like Professor XU Jintang, who specializes in Gastrodia (TIAN MA), Professor LIU Tiecheng, who specializes in American Ginseng, Professor ZHOU Qingnian, who specializes in Amomi (SHA REN), and Professor CHEN Weiping, who specializes in Mucade (ROU DOU KOU).
Over the past two decades, researchers at IMPLAD have ceaselessly devoted themselves to the improvement of human health through the development, utilization and protection of medicinal plant resources. Having taken on the task of researching this area, the institute and its researchers have helped to continuously improve the quality and capacity of the relevant technologies and sciences. Over the years, this has lead to international recognition and widespread influence in the global arena of medical plant research.
In the wake of recent changes and development seen over the past few years, a new generation of researchers at IMPLAD has inherited the best of the past and is continuing the strong tradition of innovation. By carving out new areas of research, these individuals are also helping to ensure that the work continues in its rapid development. In addition to the international influence of its research into medicinal plant resources and their protection, research at the institute has achieved international levels in the fields of plant cultivation, natural product chemistry, pharmacology, toxicology, and biotechnology. Since its foundation, the institute has undertaken over 300 key state research projects, published more than 2,500 papers, edited/written more than 100 books and received over 90 scientific awards, including more than 70 national and provincial prizes. Most notably, during the national “Tenth Five-year plan”, the institute was specifically awarded 197 national level projects and, in 2005, research funding surpassed 40 million Chinese Yuan. Over the years, the institute has participated in the establishment of a number of international and national TCM R&D bases, including:
● The WHO Center for Collaboration on Traditional Medicine (1986)
● The Center for the Utilization and Conservation of Chinese Medicinal Herb Resources (a key research laboratory established by the State Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine, 1996)
● The National Medicinal Plant Seed Resource Bank (2005)
● The National Center for Chinese Medicinal Herb Reference Standards
● The Laboratory for Investigation into the Chemical Basis and Resource Utilization of Chinese Medicinal Herbs (a key research laboratory established by the Ministry of Education, PRC, 2004)
● The Chinese Medicinal Herb Resource Conservation and Phytochemistry Laboratory (a key research laboratory established by the State Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine 2003)
● The Beijing Municipal Department of Pharmacognosy (a key research department established in 2002)
● National Technical Platforms:
〇 Technical platform for medicinal plant germplasm resources (2002)
〇 Technical platform for the prevention of plant diseases and insect pests on Chinese medicinal herbs
〇 Technical platform for the testing of pesticide residue in Chinese medicinal herbs (2003)
〇 Technical platform for pharmacology and toxicology (2005)
〇 Technical platform for Chinese medicinal herb seed standards (2005)
As mentioned previously, IMPLAD has been involved in a great number of national and international projects. Some of the projects include：
● A key project supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China------ Research into the pharmaphylogeny of important medicinal plant groups in China.
● A special high technology project supported by National Development and Reform Commission-------A model project for using wild crafting techniques to commercialize Fritillaria cirrhosa (Chuan Bei Mu), an endangered biological resource in Western China.
● NIH Project------Center for Chinese Herbal Therapy (CHT) for Asthma: Project 3 – Chemical and Biological Characteristics of Botanicals (PI)
● The Special Funds for National Sci-tech Infrastructure Platform project ------ Development and delineation of description protocols for medicinal plant germplasm resources
● The Ministry of Finance supported Scientific Research Special Funds project ------Establishment of Chinese Medicinal Herb germplasm resources
● National “Tenth Five-year plan” State Key Technologies R&D Program --- Prevention and control of pests and diseases affecting Chinese medicinal herbs
● National “863 Program”---- R&D into two new TCM drugs -- Gastrodia elata nucleotides and Ximingting tablets.
● National “863 Program”----R&D into Yufengningxin sustained release tablets.
● National “Tenth Five-year plan” State Key Technologies R&D Program ----- Research and delineation of quality standards and control protocols for the seeds of 20 species of Chinese medicinal herbs
● A Ministry of Science and Technology “Basic Science Project”----Preservation of Chinese medicinal herb germplasm resources.
IMPLAD is actively involved in international exchange and cooperation; over the past few years, it has sent thirty research investigators to such places as the USA, the UK, Korea and Hong Kong for training, study and collaborative research, and 96 have been sent abroad to participate in international conferences and academic exchanges. As the WHO Center for Collaboration on Traditional Medicine in China, we have received over 300 overseas delegations for a total of more than 1000 scientists coming to participate in academic exchange, and have as well hosted the training of 12 foreign scientists from such countries as the UK, Japan, Korea, India and Nepal. The institute has established international exchange and collaboration with institutions from 50 countries including the US, the UK, France, Japan, and Peru. At the moment, the institute is involved in the organization of the Ninth International Congress on Ethnopharmacology.
Under the directorship of Professor CHEN Shi-Lin, the Director of IMPLAD, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences ? Peking Union Medical College Institute of Medicinal Plant Development is deeply involved in research, and, as the institute is determined and dauntless in its advancement, it is re-writing the book on the science of medicinal herbs in China!
ADD：No. 151 Malianwa North Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100094, P. R. China