22.03.2005 Regional News

Scientists not out to rob herbalists of their knowledge

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Kumasi, March 22, GNA - A chemist has described as unfortunate the claim by some herbalists that scientists were out to rob them of their knowledge and formulas for herbal medicine when joint ventures are initiated.

Mr Caleb Frimpong, Manager of the Chemical Analysis Laboratory of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), said such collaboration between herbalists and scientists would bring positive developments and gains.

Mr Frimpong said this when he briefed the GNA on Monday on developments in respect of some HIV patients whose cases were being monitored at the chemical analysis laboratory over the past one-year. The laboratory is monitoring 23 HIV patients who are being treated with an herbal concoction known as "Koankro" and prepared by Mr Kamara Agyapong, Director of the Peace Liberal Clinic at Ejisu-Zongo. Mr Frimpong said the essence of the collaboration with Mr Agyapong is to subject his herbal preparation to scientific test to ascertain its potency or otherwise.

"From the look of things, even though only one of the patients has come for the second round of testing, there is hope that the medicine can be effective but we cannot draw conclusions now", he said. He called on herbalists who claim to have a cure for HIV and other chronic diseases to subject such preparations to scientific analysis.

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