Conference to explore natural bioactives for treating a wide range of diseases

An international conference in London will explore the latest research on ginseng, cumin and other medicinal herbs, and how they can be used to treat diseases such as diabetes, cancer, depression, and Parkinson’s.  Hosted by the Ontario Ginseng Innovation and Research Consortium (OGIRC) at Western University, “Cultivating Natural Bioactives” takes place at the London Convention Centre from Monday, July 9 to Wednesday, July 11, and includes a free public forum.

More than 40 speakers from China, India, Australia, the U-S, Puerto Rico and across Canada will discuss issues such as adding natural bioactives to food, regulating natural supplements, ginseng production, and therapeutics development.

Siyaram Pandey of the University of Windsor will discuss his research using dandelion root, turmeric and long pepper extracts to fight cancer.  Other topics include using cumin for treating schizophrenia and to fight inflammation, and the wide range of medicinal uses for ginseng. Click here for the full program.

“We want to bring experts from different backgrounds to exchange their ideas and their findings about natural bioactives, because each country has its challenges.  We want to learn from each other, and hope it will ultimately lead to collaborations,” says Ed Lui, conference organizer and a professor of physiology and pharmacology at Western’s Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry.  He also leads ginseng research at the OGIRC.  “Researchers can now produce state of the art experimental models that show that ginseng actually works in cardiovascular health, cancer, even exercise-induced muscle injury, erectile dysfunction, infection, inflammation; everything under the sun seems to respond to ginseng, and more than that, we are now starting to understand the molecular mechanism of how it works.”

The conference will also include a free public forum on Wednesday, July 11 from 12:15 to 1:30 p.m. at the London Convention Centre.  Questions about the proper and safe use of herbal products and health supplements will be answered by internationally-renowned experts.  The panel will include Paul Coates, the Director of the Office of Dietary Supplements at the U.S. National Institutes of Health, Jeremy Burton of the Canadian Research & Development Centre for Probiotics, Paul Saunders of the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine, and Mary Alton Mackey, a consultant in health, food and nutrition policies and programs.  The public is asked to preregister for the free session by Sunday, July 8.

Click here for a link to video of Lui discussing the conference.

Media contact: Kathy Wallis, Media Relations Officer, Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry, 519-661-2111 ext. 81136, cell: 519-777-1573,
Kathy Wallis