Short Courses

Short Course on Traditional Medicine Development Level I
The Institute of Traditional Medicine (ITM) is advertising five days short course training on Traditional Medicine Development level I starting from 17th to 21st September 2018. The applications are open from 12th June, 2018 and the closing date for receiving application and payment is 31st August, 2018.  Download the Brochure, Advert (Swahili/English)  and Application Form (Swahili, English)
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Short Course on Traditional Medicine Development Level II

The Institute of Traditional Medicine (ITM) is advertising five days short course on Traditional Medicine Development level II starting from 24th to 28th September 2018. The applications are open from 12th June, 2018 and the closing date for receiving application and payment is 31st August, 2018.  Download the Brochure, Advert (Swahili, English)  and Application Form (Swahili, English)

 

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Pharmaceuticals for Medicine Without Borders
Research done on valuable botanical pharmaceutical information for cures for many of the world's diseases. Entirely free information offered to empower individuals who may suffer from these diseases.

National Institute of Medical Herbalists 
Founded in 1864, NIMH is the oldest body of professional practising herbalists in the western world. Information and frequently asked questions about herbs. Click to See More!!

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‘Mstafeli’ Potential Cancer Cure

 
An expert from the Institute of Traditional Medicine at the Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences – Department of Medical Botany, Plant Breeding and Agronomy, Dr Joseph Otieno exclusively told the ‘Daily News on Saturday’ Read More!!

Employees (2)

Dr. Ester Innocent- BSc. (Ed); MSc. (Chem.); PhD
ITM - Director & Senior Research Fellow
P.O. Box 65001, Dar es Salaam,
E-mail: ditm@muhas.ac.tz or minza@talk21.com
Direct Line: 21500096, 2150302-6 Ext 1013, 2150302-6 Ext. 1013

She obtained her BSc (Educ.) degree in 1999 and then on the same year she joined MSc studies specializing natural product chemistry and graduated in 2002. She joined PhD studies in the Department of Chemistry of the University of Dar es Salaam where she graduated in 2007.  She joined the Institute of Traditional Medicine (ITM) of the Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS) in 2002 where she has served at different capacity as Research Fellow, Head of Department (2009-2012) and currently, the Director (2012-todate). She has over 35 publications in peer reviewed international journals and active as supervisor for 2 PhD and 5 MSc students. Her research focus on bio-prospecting, Natural Products Chemistry, biological testing with the goal of discovery of bioactive compounds for herbal medicines and botanical insecticides development through; a) field survey to discover and document ethnobotanical uses of plant species for control of diseases pests and vectors and for treatment. b) Screening of different extracts from different parts of plants as well as pure compounds by using in-vitro and in-vivo models. c) Identifying distinct chemical markers in the active extracts, formulations or plant materials as basis for quality control in standardization of herbal medicines and botanical insecticides.  Dr. Innocent is a chairperson to ITM board; Treasurer to Tanzania Chemical Society (TCS) and served as National Representative for IUPAC Organic and Bio-molecular Chemistry Division (III). Also she is a member of various professional bodies including; The Natural product research in Eastern and Central Africa (NAPRECA) and The African Regional Postgraduate Program in Insect Science (ARPPIS) Scholars Association (ASA) and the Tanzania Academy of Science (TAAS). She is a member of technical harmonization committee of African Traditional Medicine Standards (THC-013) of the African Regional standard organization (ARSO)

 

 Esther

 

Dr. Joseph Nicolao Otieno- BSc., MSc. Forestry, PhD Ethnobotany
Senior Research Fellow & Head of Department
Department of Medical Botany, Plant Breeding and Agronomy
Tel: +255 222150096 Mob. +255 784412625.
Email: onicolao@yahoo.co.uk; jotieno@muhas.ac.tz, onicolao@gmail.com

Bsc, MSc. Forestry (SUA), PhD Ethnobotany (UDSM). A Tanzanian born in 21stst December 1966 Rorya District Mara Region. Currently a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of Traditional Medicines-Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences. Specialized in Forest management & Mensuration and Ethnobotany. Main duties at the institute includes ethnobiomedical surveys, identification and medicinal plant conservation, Herbarium data management, agronomic and plant breeding research, consultancy and teaching of post graduate students.
Have short term specialized training in Research Methodology. Effective Project Planning and Evaluation in Biomedical Research. Herbarium Management and Plant Identification, Biodiversity Information Sharing policy and IT technology and IPR issues. Have published 6 articles in retrievable proceedings, 18 papers in regional and international peer reviewed journals, book chapters and technical reports. Did a  Post Doctoral training on Identification and monitoring the trade in Tanzanian wild-harvested medicinal plants by means of genomics-based DNA barcoding in Naturalis Biodiversity Centre, Leiden University Netherlands from 2012-2014

   Otieno  

Dr. Modest C. Kapingu- Bpharm, PhD Phytochemistry
Senior Research Fellow, and Head of Department of Natural Products Development and Formulations.
Tel +255 22 2150096 Mob +255 787678138, +255 717098504
Email: ckapingu@yahoo.com

Born in Shinyanga district-Tinde in 1952. Obtained Diploma in Organic Chemistry Nankai University China (1978), Bpharm, Nanjing Pharmaceutical College China (1985) PhD (Phytochemistry) China Pharmaceutical University (1996)
Senior Research Fellow Muhimbili Unievrsity of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS), Dar-es–Salaam, Tanzania.  
He joined the Institute of Traditional Medicine (ITM), MUHAS in 1986.
Positions held include Head Department of Biological and Pre –Clinical Studies, Head of Department of Natural Product Development and Formulation, Head Formulation and Standardization of Herbal Medicines Unit. His research interests focus on the discovery of novel anti- HIV, Cancer and Malaria from medicinal plants. Recently has been focusing on formulation of herbal medicines for use against Malaria HIV/AIDS and Cholesterol.

   Kapingu  

Dr. Pax  Jessey  Masimba- BVM, MVM, PhD
Research Fellow & Head of Department, Biological and Pre –Clinical Studies,
Email: paxmasimba@gmail.com Tel: +255 22 2150096.

EDUCATION BACKGROUND
 University Education: PhD (Microbiology; HIV-1 Drug Resistance): University of Basel, Switzerland, 2011; Master of Veterinary Medicine (Microbiology): Sokoine University of Agriculture, Morogoro, Tanzania, 2003; Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine: Sokoine University of Agriculture, Morogoro, Tanzania, 1999.

RESEARCH AREAS, INTEREST AND EXPERIENCE
Working as a Research Fellow in the Department of Biological and Pre-Clinical Studies, the main interest has been on drug screening/discovery from natural products with emphasis on:
•    Identification of HIV-1 lead compounds from medicinal plants
•    Identification of antibacterial and antifungal agents from medicinal plants
•    Research on anti- cancer, anti-diabetics, anti-epileptics and anti-malarials from herbal plants
SKILLS
-In-vivo and in-vitro drug assays particularly cytotoxicity, anti-microbial assays, anti-malarial assay, anti-diabetic assays and anti-epileptic assays
-Molecular based techniques e.g. PCR, Sequencing, Microarrays
-Microscopy including Immunofluorescence techniques

   Masimba  

 Prof Rogasian Lemmy Anselm Mahunnah- Bsc(Educ; MSc (Bot); PhD.
Associate Research Professor Associate Department of Medical Botany, Agronomy and Plant Breeding,
Tel +255 22 2150096; Email: mahunnah@yahoo.co.uk

He joined the Institute in 1978 as a Tutorial Assistant. Over the years he climbed the academic ladder through teaching, research and consultancy. He was promoted to Senior Research Fellow in 1989. To date he is Associate Research Professor in Medical botany at the Department of Medical Botany, Agronomy and Plant Breeding, Institute of Traditional Medicine, MUHAS; a post he has held since 1995. He has published over 70 articles in scientific journals, books and conferences, mostly in the area of ethnobotany, ethnomedicine, and ethnopharmacology, conservation of medicinal plants,
Policy/legal frameworks and environment. Prof Mahunnah served in the capacity of Director of the ITM between 1994-2000; member of the Inter-African Committee on Traditional Medicine and Medicinal Plants of the African Union (1998- 2005) and a temporary expert in traditional medicine at the WHO/AFRO, Brazzaville from 2005-2012.  He also served as the first Chairman of the Traditional and Alternative Health Practice Council of Tanzania in the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare from 2005 to March, 2013. He retired from Public Service in 2006 and since then to-date is engaged in teaching, research and consultancy at ITM, MUHAS.

   Mahunnah  

 Baraka Samwel- BSc. (Chem.); MSc. (Trad. Med. Dev.)
Assistant Research Fellow, Department of Natural Products Development and Formulations. Email: barakandiege@yahoo.co.uk.

Baraka Samwel was awarded his BSc degree in Chemistry from the University of Dar es Salaam in 2010. In 2011, He was enrolled to pursue MSc in Traditional Medicines Development at the Institute of Traditional Medicine (ITM), Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS) and graduating in 2013. In 2013 he joined ITM- MUHAS as a Research Fellow Trainee. In 2014, he was promoted to Assistant research Fellow.
From March- September, 2015 he joined CSIR-Indian Institute of Chemical Technology (IICT) in India as a Research Trainee Fellow Staff. He is a member of the Natural Product Research in Eastern and Central Africa (NAPRECA). His research interests basing on identification and characterization of biological active phytochemicals from medicinal plants. Currently, he is a PhD student at MUHAS. His PhD study aiming on establishing, isolating and characterizing of mosquito larvicidal active phytochemicals.

   Baraka  

 Jackson Thomas- BSc. (BLS) MSc.( Inf. Biol.)
Assistant Lecturer, Department of Biological and Pre –Clinical Studies,
Email: jthomas.mo@gmail.com

He was Born in 1984 in Arusha, Tanzania. He joined ITM in Aug 2015 from Ifakara Health Institute (IHI), Bagamoyo Research and Training Centre (IHI-BRTC) where he worked for five (5) years, first as a lab scientist 2010-2011, then as a Laboratory Manager (2013-2015). He is a holder of Masters of Science in Infection Biology, MSc. (Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute –University of Basel, Switzerland) (2011-2013) and Bachelor of Science, BSc. in Biotechnology and Laboratory Science (BLS), of Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA) (2007-2010).

OTHER PROFFESIONAL TRAINING
Quality Assurance for human subject research: Implementation of international guidelines for conduct of clinical and epidemiological studies (GCP, GCLP, and Guidelines for Epidemiological studies). Conducted by Royal Tropical Institute (February 17-19 2014)
Training for Trainers course on Quality Assurance for human subject research. Conducted by Royal Tropical Institute (February 20-21, 2014)
Good Clinical Practice and Good Clinical Laboratory Practice (GCLP). Offered by Ifakara Health Institute (IHI). (May 16, 2014)
Global Access to health offered by Geneva Health Forum (April 18-20 2012)
Clinical Practice, offered by Quintiles (February 01 2011Good)
Clinical Practice (GCP) Training for MVI clinical studies. Conducted by PPD (October 22-23 2010)

   Jackson  

 David Credo- BSc. (Gen); MSc. Trad. Med Dev (Candidate)
Tutorial Assistant, Department of Natural Products Development and Formulations Mob: +255 755765208, +255 653426718, E -mail: credodavid@gmail.com

He was born in March 25, 1987 in Kwimba district, Mwanza, Tanzania. He received his BSc. (Majoring in Chemistry and Microbiology) in 2011 at the University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. He attended an Advanced Training in Quality Assurance for safe food in   ACP (African, Caribbean, and Pacific Group of States)  provided by EDES in 2014 held in Dar es salaam, Tanzania.

Skills and Experiences
Isolation of pure natural compounds (drugs) from medicinal plants.
In-vivo and in-vitro drug assays particularly anti-microbial assays.
Molecular based techniques e.g. PCR and Short Tandem Repeats (STR) analysis for Human DNA.
In 2015 he joined the Institute of Traditional Medicine (ITM) at Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS), as a Tutorial Assistant, Department of Natural Products Development and Formulations

 

   David  

Ismail A. Athuman- Bed (Science), MSc. Trad. Med Dev
Tutorial assistant, Department of Natural Products Development and Formulations,
Email: sumaville02@yahoo.co.uk, Mob. +255 719 128 044.

He was born in 29th December, 1985 in Mvomero District, Morogoro region, Tanzania. He received Bed Science in Chemistry in 2009 at the University Of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. He then enrolled for MSc. in traditional medicine development at Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, graduating in 2015.
He is currently serving as Tutorial assistant and professional training, department of Natural Product Development and Formulation. His interest in research lies in Natural product chemistry, botanical insecticides, isolation of active ingredients from medicinal plants used for insecticides, cancer, and infertility and Malaria treatment. Also ethnobotanical survey to discover and document uses of medicinal plants species.

 

   Ismail A  

 Dr Francis Machumi- BSc (Educ), MSc. PhD
Research Fellow, Department of Natural Products Development and Formulations,
Email:  francis.machumi@gmail.com

Dr Francis Machumi holds a PhD in Chemistry earned at University of Nairobi (2011), an MSc in Organic Chemistry earned at University of Botswana (2004) and a BSc (Ed) from University of Dar es Salaam (2002). He joined the ITM-MUHAS in November 2013 as a Research Fellow in the department of Natural Products Development and Formulations. He is a member of Tanzania Chemical Society (TCS), Natural Products Research Network for East and Central Africa (NAPRECA) and the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC).
He is currently the Chairman of ITM Consultancy Bureau and teaches Biosynthesis of Secondary Metabolites (TM 603.2). His research interests, research experience and publications are in isolation and identification natural products from medicinal plants, antimicrobial and antiparasitic assays as well as derivertization and synthesis of natural products.

 

   Francis  
 Mr Mourice N. Mbunde- BSc., MSc, PhD Candidate)
Assistant Lecturer, Department of Natural Products Development and Formulation, Email: mouricevictor@gmail.com Mob +255 757 942 103, +255 784 864 417, +255 658 559 795

Born in 1986 at Rorya District, Mara. Obtained his bachelor degree (BSc. Wildlife Management) in 2011 at Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA) then joined in the same year for postgraduate studies doing MSc Natural Products Technology and Value Addition at Sokoine University of Agriculture and graduated in 2013. He joined the Institute of Traditional Medicine, Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS) in the year 2014 as Assistant Lecturer serving under the department of Natural Products Development and Formulations.
Currently he is pursuing his PhD studies at MUHAS with focus on discovery of antifungal drug from traditionally used Tanzanian medicinal plants. This is a sandwich Programme between MUHAS and Stockholm University (SU), Sweden. His research interests dwell in Natural Product Chemistry, Ecosystem Health, Natural products processing and value addition, identification of plants with antifungal activities, antioxidants from plants.

   Mbunde  
 Prof. Mainen Moshi- BPharm, PhD
Associate Research Professor& Directorate, Research and Publications.
Department of Biological and Pre –Clinical Studies, E-mail: mmoshi@muhas.ac.tz; gynura1955@yahoo.com, Mob: +255 22 2152489, Fax +255 22 2150465

Born on 28th January 1956 in Moshi Rural, Kilimanjaro, Tanzania. Moshi is the Director of Research and Publications of the Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
He obtained his Bachelor of Pharmacy Degree (1984) at the University of Dar es Salaam, Muhimbili Campus, and a PhD  (Pharmacology, 1991) at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, UK. He served as Directors of the Institute of Traditional Medicine (MUHAS), Information and Communications Technology (MUHAS); and Research and Publication (MUHAS). He is also an
Associate Member of Tanzania Academy of Sciences, Member Adverse Drugs Reactions Technical Advisory Committee (TFDA), Member Cosmetics Technical Advisory Committee (TFDA), Member COSTECH Health R&D Committee, Member Human Medicines Registration Committee (TFDA),Member Tanzania National Health Research Forum Ethical Review Committee, Member Tanzania Commission for Science and Technology R&D Advisory Committee of Information, Communication and Technology, WHO/TDR trainer for Good Laboratory Practice; Chairman Ministry of Health and Social Welfare Committee for Promotion of Herbal Medicines; Member, Editorial Board, Tanzania Journal of Health Research; Reviewer for several regional and International Journals.
Keywords: Pharmacology; Ethnopharmacology; antimicrobials; antimalarials; diabetes; drug discovery; value-edition.

   Moshi  

 Dr. Edmund J. Kayombo- BSc (Ed), MSc, PhD
Research Fellow, Department of Medical Botany, Agronomy and Plant Breeding ITM.
Email: ekayombo@hotmail.com, edmundkayombo@yahoo.com

He was born at Mlangali Village, Ludewa district Njombe Region in October 16, 1952. Obtained Diploma in Teachers Training College Dar-es-Salaam 1979, Bachelor of Education and Masters of Arts (Demography), Dar-es-Salaam University, 1984 and 1988 respectively, Tanzania and PhD in Socio-cultural Anthropology University of Vienna, Austria. He joined the Institute of Traditional Medicine, Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences in 1989. His research interests focus on the role of Traditional health practitioners on provision of healthcare with focus on HIV/AIDS, reproductive health and initiation of collaboration between conventional and traditional medicine practitioners.

 

   Kayombo  
 Ramadhani SO Nondo- BPharm, MSc, PhD (Candidate)
Assistant Research Fellow, Department of Biological and Pre –Clinical Studies, Email: nondo75@yahoo.com, rnondo@muhas.ac.tz

Born in 1975 in Kiwangwa village, Bagamoyo district. He is currently pursuing his PhD at MUHAS since 2011 to date. Previously attended MSc. Pharmacology, University of Strasbourg1, Strasbourg – France (2007 – 2009); Certificate of French as a Foreign Language; Centre for Applied Linguistics,  University of Franche-Comté, Besançon- France ( 2006 – 2007. WHO/TDR Capacity Building on Malaria Drug Discovery Bio-Assay Training at the Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Nairobi- Kenya (2006);
He underwent Internship at Muhimbili National Hospital (2003 – 2004) just after his Bachelor of Pharmacy degree of the University of Dar es Salaam, UDSM (1999 – 2003). His research interests include Drug Discovery from Natural products, particularly in searching new antimalarial molecules from medicinal plants traditionally used for treatment of malaria in Tanzania with the aim of getting effective and safe antimalarial compounds.

   Nondo  
Febronia Christian Uiso- BSc, MSc
Senior Research Fellow, Department of Natural Products Development and Formulation
Email: fcuiso@muhas.ac.tz

RESEARCH AREAS, INTEREST AND EXPERIENCE
1. Screening of Tanzanian Plants for different activities
2. Towards the Development and Evaluation of Traditional Herbal Remedies for Efficacy and Safety for Treatment of HIV/AIDS-Infected Patients in Tanzania.
3. Maternal Health, Nutrition and pregnancy outcome
4. Indigenous Foods and Food Additives for the Management of Health conditions including HIV/AIDS – an Eco-Health approach.
5. Medicinal and Food Plants for the Mitigation of Health Conditions
6. Phytochemical screening of traditionally used medicinal Plants for different chemical compounds such as alkaloids, flavonoids, saponins, tannins, terpenoids and coumarins. General qualitative and quantitative detection of the mentioned chemical compounds.
7. Isolation, characterization and identification of different compounds from plants used in traditional medicine from different regions of the country.
8. Extraction and screening of different plant extracts and isolated compounds for biological activities such as antibacterial, antifungal, molluscicidal and antidiabetic activities.
9. Ethnobotanical surveys in different parts of the country and study of consumption patterns and nutritional contribution of leafy vegetables and fruits, including risk assessment of consumption of some antinutritional components in plant based foods.
10. Observation and safety assessment of traditional healer’s management of HIV/AIDS.

   Febronia  

 Mr. Benson Peter- BSc. Chem (Hons); MSc. Trad. Med. Dev.)
Lab technician, Department of Natural Products Development and Formulation.  
Telephone No. +255 76735 3436
Email: leahhaule86@gmail.com

A Chemist by professional with BSc. Chemistry (UDSM, 2010); MSc. Traditional Medicine Development (MUHAS, 2013). He is an employed as a ‟Laboratory Research Scientist″. His main duties are Organizes practical for undergraduate students, Participate in Consultancy projects under close supervision with senior staff, assists Academic staff in their research and development in health field, Instruct undergraduate and postgraduate students during practical, Prepare manuscript, laboratory practical and other relevant needs.  He is also in-charge of the GMP laboratory, being responsible for formulation and standardization of herbal medicine to meet the quality needed. I am also a member of Tanzania chemical society (TCS) and Natural Product Research in Eastern and Central Africa (NAPRECA).

 

   Benson  
 Siri Abihudi-. BSc (Env), MSc Trad. Med Dev
Assistant lecture, Department of Medical Botany, Agronomy and Plant Breeding ITM. Email: sabihudi@gmail.com Mob: +255759358211; 255712958211

She was born in Mwanga district, Kilimanjaro region. She joined the Institute of Traditional Medicine (ITM) at Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences MUHAS), working as an assistant lecturer at the Department of Medical Botany, Agronomy and Plant Breeding in 2015. She did her Master of Science in Traditional Medicine at Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania in 2014
Her Bachelor of Environmental Science and Natural Resources was persued in Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda in 2012. Her research interests focus on Systematic botany, Molecular based techniques. e.g. DNA bacoding,  Evolutionary biology, biodiversity, Ethno-botanical skills and data collection techniques and Ecosystem health and biodiversity.

   Siri  
Ms. Leah Haule- (Dip)
Lab technician, Department of Medical Botany, Agronomy and Plant Breeding ITM.  
Telephone No. +255 76735 3436
Email: leahhaule86@gmail.com

Born in 1988 in Ruvuma region Songea district Tanzania. She was awarded a diploma in forestry from Olmotonyi training institute in Arusha. She joined the Institute of Traditional Medicine in December 2013. She is working as laboratory technician in the ITM herbarium. Her working interests include research, tree nursery, plants collection and preservation.
   Leah  
       

Employees

Dr. Ester Innocent (BSc. (Ed); MSc. (Chem.); PhD

ITM - Director & Senior Research Fellow.

Department of Biological and Pre –Clinical Studies Email: minza@talk21.com Tel +255 22 2150096

About Me: (a short bio)
I obtained my BSc (Educ.) degree in 1999 and then on the same year I joined MSc studies specializing natural product chemistry and graduated in 2002. I joined PhD studies in the Department of Chemistry of the University of Dar es Salaam where I graduated in 2007.  I joined the Institute of Traditional Medicine (ITM) of the Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS) in 2002 where I served at different capacity as Research Fellow, Head of Department (2009-2012) and currently, the Director (2012-todate). I have over 40 publications in peer reviewed international journals and active as supervisor for more than 15 students including PhD, MSc and undergraduate students.  
 I saved as a Treasurer to Tanzania Chemical Society (TCS) and a National Representative for IUPAC Organic and Bio-molecular Chemistry Division (III). Also, I am serving as a member of various professional bodies including; The Natural product research in Eastern and Central Africa (NAPRECA), The African Regional Postgraduate Program in Insect Science (ARPPIS) Scholars Association (ASA) and the Tanzania Academy of Science (TAAS). Currently I am a chairperson to ITM board; member to technical harmonization committee of African Traditional Medicine Standards (THC-013) of the African Regional standard organization (ARSO); Chairperson, Traditional medicines technical committee (CDC 20) of the Tanzania standard bureau (TBS) and member of Advisory committee of Public health and medicine, Tanzania Commission for Science and Technology (COSTECH)
Expertise:
•    Chemistry of Natural product
•    Organic Spectroscopy
•    Bio-prospecting including ethnopharmacology
Research interests
My research focus is on bio-prospecting, Natural Products Chemistry, biological testing with the goal of discovering bioactive compounds for herbal medicines and botanical insecticides development through; a) field survey to discover and document ethnobotanical uses of plant species for control of diseases pests and vectors and for treatment. b) Screening of different extracts from different parts of plants as well as pure compounds by using in-vitro and in-vivo models. c) Identifying distinct chemical markers in the active extracts, formulations or plant materials as basis for quality control in standardization of herbal medicines and botanical insecticides.


 

Dr Francis Machumi. (BSc (Ed), MSc. PhD)

Acting Head of Department- Department of Natural Product Development and Formulation

Research Fellow, Email:  francis.machumi@gmail.com


 
About me: (a short bio)
I graduated my PhD in Chemistry at University of Nairobi in 2011 after doing MSc in Organic Chemistry at University of Botswana in 2004 and BSc (Ed) at University of Dar es Salaam in 2002. Since then I have been teaching and researching on natural products from traditionally used medicinal plants. I joined Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences in 2013 as a Research Fellow. I am a member to three professional and research networks; Tanzania Chemical Society (TCS), Natural Products Research Network for Eastern and Central Africa (NAPRECA) and the Royal Chemical Society (RSC).
Expertise:
My expertise includes separation of active metabolites from medicinal plants, spectroscopic identification of secondary metabolites, synthetic modifications of secondary metabolites and antimicrobial assays.
Research Interests:
My research interests are in isolation and identification natural products from medicinal plants, antimicrobial and antiparasitic assays as well as derivertization and synthesis of natural products.


 

Dr. Joseph Nicolao Otieno. (BSc., MSc. Forestry (SUA), PhD Ethnobotany (UDSM)

Head of Department- Department of Medical Botany, Plant Breeding and Agronomy

Senior Research Fellow,Tel: +255 222150096 Mob. +255 784412625. Email: onicolao@yahoo.co.uk; jotieno@muhas.ac.tz, onicolao@gmail.com


About Me: (a short bio)
I am a Tanzanian born in 21stst December 1966 Rorya District Mara Region. My tertiary education is recorded from Sokoine University of Agriculture for Bsc, and MSc. Forestry, then PhD Ethnobotany at the University of Dares Salaam. Currently I am a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of Traditional Medicines-Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences. Specialized in Forest management & Mensuration and Ethnobotany. I have short term specialized training in Research Methodology. Effective Project Planning and Evaluation in Biomedical Research, Herbarium Management and Plant Identification, Biodiversity Information Sharing policy and IT technology and IPR issues. Have published 6 articles in retrievable proceedings, 33 papers in regional and international peer reviewed journals, book chapters and technical reports. Did a  Post Doctoral training on genomics-based DNA barcoding in Naturalis Biodiversity Centre, Leiden University Netherlands from 2012-2014. Currently is managing 2 projects funded by Swedish Research Council and USAID on DNA genomic technology on Tanzania traded medicinal plants
Research Interests:
Research interest is mainly on documentation and conservation of medicinal plants and plant DNA barcoding. About 400 medicinal plant samples have been collected for DNA bar-coding studies. The gene sequences of these are destined for uploading to the international gene bank.


 

Dr. Modest C. Kapingu (Bpharm, PhD Phytochemistry)

Senior Research Fellow, Department of Natural Products Development and Formulations.

Tel +255 22 2150096 Mob +255 787678138, +255 717098504 Email: ckapingu@yahoo.com

 About Me:
I joined the Institute of Traditional Medicine, Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences in 1986. Positions held include Head Department, of Biological and Pre –Clinical Studies, Head Department of Natural Product Development and Formulation, Head Formulation and Standardization of Herbal Medicine Unit.
Expertise:
Pharmacist and Phytochemist expert in Formulation and Standardization of herbal medicine, isolation and elucidation of compounds from herbal medicine.
Research interests:
Focus on the discovery of novel anti- HIV, Cancer and Malaria from medicinal plants.Recently has been focusing on formulation of herbal medicines for use against Malaria HIV/AIDS and Cholesterol.
Selected Publications.


 

Prof Rogasian Lemmy Anselm Mahunnah (PhD).

Associate Research Professor Associate Department of Medical Botany, Agronomy and Plant Breeding, Tel +255 22 2150096 Email: mahunnah@yahoo.co.uk

He joined the Institute in 1978 as a Tutorial Assistant. Over the years he climbed the academic ladder through teaching, research and consultancy. He was promoted to Senior Research Fellow in 1989. To date he is Associate Research Professor in Medical botany at the Department of Medical Botany, Agronomy and Plant Breeding, Institute of Traditional Medicine, MUHAS; a post he has held since 1995.

He has published over 70 articles in scientific journals, books and conferences, mostly in the area of ethnobotany, ethnomedicine, and ethnopharmacology, conservation of medicinal plants, Policy/legal frameworks and environment. Prof Mahunnah served in the capacity of Director of the ITM between 1994-2000; member of the Inter-African Committee on Traditional Medicine and Medicinal Plants of the African Union (1998- 2005) and a temporary expert in traditional medicine at the WHO/AFRO, Brazzaville from 2005-2012.  He also served as the first Chairman of the Traditional and Alternative Health Practice Council of Tanzania in the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare from 2005 to March, 2013. He retired from Public Service in 2006 and since then to-date is engaged in teaching, research and consultancy at ITM, MUHAS.


 

 Dr. Pax  Jessey  Masimba (BVM, MVM, PhD)

 Head of Department-Department of Biological and Pre –Clinical Studies.

Research Fellow,Email: paxmasimba@gmail.com Tel: +255 22 2150096.

 My Biography:
I completed my bachelor degree in Veterinary Medicine, BVM, in 1999 at Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA), Master of Veterinary Medicine (Microbiology) in 2003 at SUA, and PhD (Microbiology) in 2011 at Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, University of Basel, Switzerland.I worked as a tutor at the Animals Diseases Research Institute in Dar es Salaam for one year in 2004 before joining MUHAS in January 2005 as an Assistant Research Fellow. The other professional trainings which have obtained include malaria parasite culture at the College of Health Sciences, School of Pharmacy, University of Nairobi, Kenya (one month), Cell culture and anti-HIV-virus screening testing at Noguchi Memorial Institute, University of Ghana (3 months), and NMR techniques at University of Potsdam (3 months). I also completed one year Post Doctoral training on medicinal plants and climate change under the Climate Impact Research Capacity and Leadership Enhancement (CIRCLE) Program at the University of Dare s Salaam in 2016. I have published over 25 papers in regional and international peer reviewed journals, and technical reports. My publications emanate from research on anti-microbial, anti-malarial, anti-epileptic, anti-diabetic, anti-HIV, cytotoxic and anti-cancer agents from medicinal plants.

Expertise:
•    In-vivo and in-vitro drug assays particularly cytotoxicity, anti-microbial assays, anti-malarial assay, anti-diabetic assays and anti-    epileptic assays
•    Cell culture techniques
•    Molecular based techniques e.g. PCR, Sequencing, Micro-arrays
•    Microscopy including Immuno-fluorescence techniques
Research Interests:
Working as a Research Fellow in the Department of Biological and Pre-Clinical Studies, the main interest has been on drug screening/discovery from natural products with emphasis on:
•    Identification of HIV-1 lead compounds from medicinal plants
•    Identification of antibacterial and antifungal agents from medicinal plants
•    Research on anti- cancer, anti-diabetics, anti-epileptics and anti- malaria from herbal plants


 

 Baraka Samwel [BSc. (UDSM), MSc. (MUHAS)

Assistant Research Fellow, Department of Natural Products Development and Formulations. Email: barakandiege@yahoo.co.uk.

About me: (a short bio)
I was awarded BSc degree in Chemistry from the University of Dar es Salaam in 2010. In 2011, I was enrolled to pursue MSc in Traditional Medicines Development at MUHAS and graduating in 2013. In 2013, I joined the Institute of Traditional Medicine, MUHAS as a Research Fellow Trainee. In 2014, I was promoted to Assistant research Fellow. From March- September 2015, I joined CSIR-Indian Institute of Chemical Technology (IICT) in India as a Research Trainee Fellow Staff. I’m a member of the Natural Product Research in Eastern and Central Africa (NAPRECA).
Expertise:
My expertise lies in detection, isolation and characterization of bioactive natural compounds from plants materials.
Research Interests:
My research interest is on identification and characterization of mosquito larvicidal active compounds from medicinal plants. Currently, he is a PhD student at MUHAS. His PhD research focusing on evaluation of mosquito larvicidal activity of some Tanzanian medicinal plants formulations in laboratory and semi-field.


 

Jackson Thomas (BSc. MSc.)

Assistant Lecturer, Department of Biological and Pre –Clinical Studies, Email: jthomas.mo@gmail.com

About Me: (a short bio)
I graduated MSc. in Infection Biology at the University of Basel, Switzerland in 2013 after doing BSc in Biotechnology and Laboratory Sciences at Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA), Tanzania in 2010. I joined ITM in Aug 2015 from Ifakara Health Institute (IHI), Bagamoyo Research and Training Centre (IHI-BRTC) where I worked for five (5) years, first as a lab scientist 2010-2011, then as a Laboratory Manager (2013-2015).
Expertise:
•    In-vitro drug assays particularly, anti-microbial assays, anti-malarial assay, anti-diabetic assays and anti-epileptic assays
•    Molecular based techniques e.g. PCR, SNP typing, Spoligotyping and MIRU-VNTR Typing.
Research Interests:
My research interest includes control of infectious diseases and drug screening/discovery from natural products mainly to identify compounds with antimicrobial activity from medicinal plants.


 

 David Credo [BSc. (UDSM).

Tutorial Assistant, Department of Natural Products Development and Formulations Mob: +255 755765208, +255 653426718, E -mail: credodavid@gmail.com

About me: (a short bio)
I was born in March 25, 1987 in Kwimba district, Mwanza, Tanzania. I received my Bachelor of Science (Majoring in Chemistry and Microbiology) in 2011 at the University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. In 2015 I joined the Institute of Traditional Medicine (ITM) at Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS), as a Tutorial Assistant, Department of Natural Products Development and Formulations.
I graduated my Master of Science in Traditional Medicines Development at Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences in 2017
Expertise:
Extraction, Screening, Isolation and structural identification of pure natural compounds (drugs) from medicinal plants and pharmacological assays for discovery of medicinal/bioactive compounds
Research Interests:
His research interest is based on isolation and identification of bioactive compounds from medicinal plants as well as pharmacological assays for the purpose of new drugs discovery and evaluation.


 

 Ismail Almas A. BedScience (UDSM), MSc. Traditional Medicine Development (MUHAS)

Tutorial assistant/Training research fellow, Department of Natural Products Development and Formulations, Email: sumaville02@yahoo.co.uk, Mob. +255 719 128 044.

About me: (a short bio)
I was born in 29th December, 1985 in Mvomero District, Morogoro region, Tanzania. I received Bachelor of education in Science (Chemistry) in 2009 at the University Of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. I then enrolled for MSc. in traditional medicine development at Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, graduating in 2015. Currently I am doing PhD at MUHAS on chemical composition and mosquito repellent properties of essential oils with the aim of developing botanical repellents.I am currently serving as Assistant Lecture, department of Natural Product Development and Formulation.
Expertise:
my experience lies in mosquito repellency bioassay, ticks bioassay, isolation and phytochemical processes of natural products, chemistry of essential oils and other secondary metabolites and neglected tropical diseases.
Research Interests:
His interest in research lies in Natural product chemistry, botanical insecticides, isolation of active ingredients from medicinal plants used for insecticides, cancer, and infertility and Malaria treatment. Also ethnobotanical survey to discover and document uses of medicinal plants species.


 

 Mr Mourice N. Mbunde (BSc., MSc, PhD student)

Assistant Lecturer, Department of Natural Products Development and Formulation, Email: mouricevictor@gmail.com Mob +255 757 942 103, +255 784 864 417, +255 658 559 795

About Me: (a short bio)
I hold a bachelor degree in Wildlife Management and MSc in Natural Products Technology and Value Addition. Currently, with funding support from Swedish Research Council I am pursuing my PhD studies at MUHAS working on antifungal compounds from Tanzanian medicinal plants. I joined the Institute of Traditional Medicine (ITM) in 2014 serving as Assistant Lecturer at the department of Natural Products Development and Formulations.
Expertise:
I am a natural products specialist, but has also expertise in ethnozoology, wildlife ecology, conservation biology.
Research Interests:
My research interests dwell in Natural Product Chemistry, Ecosystem Health, Natural products processing and value addition, identification of plants with antifungal activities, antioxidants from plants.

 


Siri Abihudi. (BSc, MSc)

Assistant lecture, Department of Medical Botany, Agronomy and Plant Breeding ITM. Email: sabihudi@gmail.com Mob: +255759358211; 255712958211

Born on 3rd September, 1988 in Mwanga district, Kilimanjaro, Tanzania.
She joined the Institute of Traditional Medicine (ITM) at Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences MUHAS), working as an assistant lecturer since 3rd August, 2015. She did her Master of Science in Traditional Medicine at MUHAS, Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania in 2014 and her Bachelor of Environmental Science and Natural Resources at Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda in 2012. Currently she is perusing her PhD in Life Sciences (Biodiversity and ecosystem management) at Nelson Mandela African Institution of Science and Technology in Tanzania.
Her research interests focus on Systematic botany, Molecular based techniques. e.g. DNA bacoding,  Evolutionary biology, Ecosystem health, biodiversity, Ethno-botanical skills and modeling studies.

 


 Prof. Mainen Moshi (BPharm, PhD)

Director, Undergraduate Education - MUHAS.

Associate Research Professor-Department of Biological and Pre –Clinical Studies, E-mail: mmoshi@muhas.ac.tz; gynura1955@yahoo.com, Mob: +255 22 2152489, Fax +255 22 2150465

About Me: (a short bio)
I graduated in 1984 with a Bachelor of Pharmacy degree from the Division of Pharmacy of the Faculty of Medicine, University of Dar es Salaam.  I went on to do a PhD in cardiovascular pharmacology at the Royal College, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, where I graduated in 1991.  Since then I returned to the Institute of Traditional Medicine, University of Dar es Salaam where I have served as a tutorial Assistant 1985,and have been doing research in ethnopharmacology and teaching pharmacology to Pharmacy, Dental, medical and nursing undergraduate and postgraduate students.I was among the team responsible for developing an MSc in Traditional Medicines Development course and recently lead initiatives to establish a program in biomedical Engineering for which a curriculum is already developed and awaiting accreditation.
I have served in several capacities at the University and outside, including being a member of the University Senate, Committee of Deans and Directors, Senate Research and Publications Committee, Senate Higher Degrees Committee, the Research Ethics Committee (IRB), and the Expedited Review Committee. I served as Head of the Experimental Pharmacology Unit of the Institute of Traditional Medicine (MUHAS), thereafter became director of the Institute of Traditional Medicine (2003-2009) and in 2009-2012 served as the Director of ICT before being appointed the University Director of Research and Publications in 2012. At National level I have served as a member of different Committees including Tanzania Food and Drugs Authority (TFDA) Adverse Drug Reactions Technical Advisory Committee, TFDA Cosmetics Technical Advisory Committee, TFDA Technical Advisory Committee for the Registration of Human Medicines, TFDA Human Medicines Registration Committee, Tanzania National Health Research Forum Executive Committee, Tanzania National Health Forum Research Ethics Committee, Chairman of a Ministry of Health and Social Welfare Committee for Promotion of Herbal Medicines from 2011 -2014, Chairman of Tanzania Global Fund Malaria Sub-Committee (2013 – 2015), Commission for Science and Technology (COSTECH) Health R&D Committee and member of the Commission for Science and Technology ICT Advisory Committee.

At International level I have served as a WHO/TDR trainer for Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) in Kenya, Tanzania, Ghana, University of Cape Town, University of Free Orange State and Brazil (for some South American universities and research institutes) in the period 1999 - 2005. I served as a GLP technical advisor to a WHO/TDR funded STI project at the Peking Medical School in 2003. In July 2012 I served in a WHO/AFRO technical advisory team on Traditional Medicine in Brazzaville, Congo which developed different guidelines on traditional medicine. I also served in preparatory committees for the development of WHO/TDR handbooks in Good Laboratory Practice, and Non-clinical toxicology handbook

Currently I am a member of the Pharmacy Council Registration Technical Advisory Committee, Member of the Kilimanjaro Christian Medical University College Governing Board, Member of the Tanzania HIV Indicator Survey Steering Committee, Associate Editor of BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, and a reviewer for several regional and international journals.
Expertise:
Ethnopharmacology research with specific interest in: Antimicrobial testing,Antimalarial testing,Antiviral testing,Brine shrimp lethality testing,Isolated organs experiments,Hypoglycaemic activity testing,Antiulcer testing,Radioimmunoassay Chromogenic assay of enzymes,Preclinical toxicology,GLP trainer
Research interests:
My current research focus is to contribute to national and international efforts to eradicate malaria. I have already built expertise for in vivo and in vitro antimalarial testing through training and supervising PhD students. I have championed studies leading to publishable results on in vivo and in vitro antimalarial screening studies using rodent Plasmodium berghei and human Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasite species


 

 Dr. Edmund J. Kayombo (BSc (Ed), MSc, PhD)

Research Fellow, Department of Medical Botany, Agronomy and Plant Breeding ITM. Email: ekayombo@hotmail.com, edmundkayombo@yahoo.com

About Me:

Born at Mlangali Village, Ludewa district Njombe Region in October 16, 1952. Obtained Diploma in Teachers Training College Dar-es-Salaam 1979, Bachelor of Education and Masters of Arts (Demography), Dar-es-Salaam University, 1984 and 1988 respectively, Tanzania and PhD in Socio-cultural Anthropology University of Vienna, Austria.He joined the Institute of Traditional Medicine, Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences in 1989. His research interests focus on the role of Traditional health practitioners on provision of healthcare with focus on HIV/AIDS, reproductive health and initiation of collaboration between conventional and traditional medicine practitioners.

Expertise:I am professional teacher (lecturer) and researcher in traditional and alternative medicine and research methods. I am involved in teaching university undergraduate and postgraduate at Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences. I have carried a numbers of studies in traditional medicine and on public health. Besides the above I am a chairperson chairman of the Traditional and Alternative Health Practitioners Council (TAHPC).

Research interest:I am interested in carrying studies on traditional and alternative medicine specifically philosophy involved in the practice, material medica used for different ill health condition and management of health problems. Besides traditional medicine I am also interested in carrying studies on public and reproductive health.


 

 Ramadhani SO Nondo (BPharm, MSc, PhD student)

Assistant Research Fellow, Department of Biological and Pre –Clinical Studies, Email: nondo75@yahoo.com, rnondo@muhas.ac.tz

About Me: (a short bio)
I was born in Bagamoyo District, in Coast region. I completed Bachelor of Pharmacy degree (BPharm) at the University of Dar es Salaam (Tanzania) in 2003, Certificate of French as a Foreign Language at the University of Franche-Comté (Besançon, France) in 2006, and MSc Pharmacology at the University of Strasbourg (Strasbourg-France) in 2009. In 2016, I completed my PhD studies at Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS), focusing on evaluation for efficacy and safety of Tanzanian medicinal plants traditionally used for the treatment of malaria.
I was employed at the Institute of Traditional Medicine-MUHAS in 2005 as Research Assistant in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, now Department of Biological and Pre-Clinical Studies. Currently, I am working in the same department as Research Fellow.
Expertise:In vitro culturing of mammalian cell lines and malaria parasite ,In vitro evaluation for antimalarial activity of crude extracts, fractions and pure compounds ,In vitro evaluation for cytotoxic activity of extracts and pure compounds on mammalian cell lines (by MTT and MTS assays) and on brine shrimp larvae (Artemia salina L.),In vitro drug assays for evaluation of antibacterial and antifungal activity by disc diffusion and microdilution methods,In vivo evaluation for antimalarial activity using rodent malaria parasites (Plasmodium berghei) model,In vivo drug assays for evaluation of anti-convulsant activity (using pentylenetetrazole- and picrotoxin-induced convulsions model) and anti-diabetes activity by oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT),Molecular biology techniques used in drug discovery (extraction of proteins, extraction of RNA, Western blot and PCR Array techniques),Extraction and fractionation of biologically active chemical constituents from medicinal plants
Research interests:
My research interest is on drug discovery from medicinal plants traditionally used for prevention and treatment of diseases in Tanzania. My research area is on evaluation for biological activities of crude extracts, fractions and isolated compounds from medicinal plants focusing on antimalarial, antibacterial, antifungal, anticancer, anti-epilepsy, and anti-diabetes activities.


 

Febronia Christian Uiso (BSc, MSc)

Senior Research Fellow, Department of Natural Products Development and Formulation Email: fcuiso@muhas.ac.tz

About me: (a short bio):

I am employed as a Senior Research Fellow, Natural Products Chemistry and Development,ITM-MUHAS. I have a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science Degrees of the University of Dar es Salaam. I also have a Master of Science in Human Nutrition of the McGill University, Canada pursued during my course of employment at MUHAS.  Currently, I am employed on contract terms after attaining compulsory retirement age. I am interested in the Traditional Medicine System as a whole, including its philosophy and their material medica.  I have done research on medicinal plants with antibacterial activity and some of the findings appear in my coauthored early publications. I have also screened plants for molluscicidal activity and general phytochemical screening for different classes of plant constituents such as alkaloids, flavonoids, saponins, terpenoids and other components. I have looked at medicinal and nutritional aspects of herbal medicines given that they are ingestion as total extracts. I also have an interest on disease mitigation and health promotion of herbal medicines specifically for diseases like diabetes and other conditions including HIV/AIDS associated conditions. In the course of work, I have further been working on some aspect of Health policy and development including intellectual property rights of the traditional medicine system.
Expertise:
Master of Science in Chemistry specializing in phytochemistry and a Master of Science in Human Nutrition specializing in indigenous medicinal and food plants including their toxicological aspects.  General Quality Control Training.




Mr. Boniphace C. Mwita (BSc Biotech & Lab Sciences, MSc Trad. Med Development Student

Tutorial Assistant, Department of Biological and Pre-clinical Studies

Mob: +255 783009700, +255 763009700, E -mail: rkerage17@gmail.com.

 About Me: (a short bio)
I was born in 1984 in Tarime District, Mara region -Tanzania; I completed Bachelor of   Biotechnology & Lab. Sciences at Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA)-Morogoro in 2011. I worked as a Teacher under the Ministry of Education and Vocational Training at Nguva Secondary School, Kigamboni, Dar es Salaam teaching biology and chemistry (2007-2009) and Kimbiji secondary school teaching chemistry & Biology as well as preparing and teaching practicals (2011-2015). I joined the Institute of Traditional Medicine (ITM) at Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS) as a Tutorial Assistant in Biological and Preclinical Studies in 2015. Currently I am undertaking MSc studies in Traditional Medicine Development at the Institute of Traditional Medicine-MUHAS
Expertise:
Molecular techniques; DNA extraction, PCR, Biotyping, Sequencing & Recombinant DNA Technology
Research Interests:
My research interest is on drug discovery from medicinal plants traditionally used for prevention and treatment of diseases in Tanzania particularly on screening and evaluation of antimalarial, antibacterial and antifungal activities of crude extracts, fractions and isolated compounds from medicinal plants and application of Molecular based techniques in identification of antimalarial and antimicrobial bioactive ingredients in medicinal plants.

 


 Zaituni Msengwa BSc. Chem & Bio. (UDSM), MSc. Trad. Medicine Development (MUHAS)

Laboratory Scientist, Department of Biological and Pre – Clinical Studies

E -mail:  msengwa_z@yahoo.com

About Me: (a short bio)
I am a laboratory scientist at the Department of Biological and Pre-clinical Studies of the Institute of Traditional Medicine-MUHAS since 2015. I graduated MSc in Traditional Medicine Development at ITM-MUHAS in 2014. I am also a holder of BSc (Ed) of UDSM graduated in 2009.
Expertise:
Conducting in vivo and in vitro bioassays particularly antiulcer, anti-epilepsy, anti-diabetic, antimicrobial and toxicity test. Also, doing   extraction, isolation and structure elucidation of pure compounds from natural products
Research Interests:
My research interest is on Drug discovery from natural products mainly from medicinal plants. It includes extraction, isolation and structure elucidation of pure compounds and testing the biological activities of plant extracts and pure compounds leading to standardization and Formulation of herbal drug.


 

 

Department of Natural Products Development and Formulation

The department of Natural Products Development and Formulations is one of the three departments of the Institute of Traditional Medicine. It deals with research, teaching and consultancy in natural products from traditionally used material medica as well as formulation of research proven products to be used for improvement of health. The department has a unit called production unit which houses a GMP laboratory (Good Manufacturing Practice laboratory) used for production of herbal medicine. It also has a natural products research laboratory used for research work. The department has ten (8) staff including seven (7) academic and one technical staff.

The department is involved in teaching postgraduates students, preparation of crude extracts and other fractions for bioassays, bioassay guided separation of active substances of plants, mineral or animal origin used in traditional medicine. characterization and identification of biologically active substances, structure elucidation of biologically active isolated compounds           formulation, standardization and laboratory scale production of herbal medicine, quality analysis of active ingredients of medicinal preparations from cultivated exotic plants and other formulations based on laboratory findings and information collected from traditional healers and dissemination of research findings to scientists, traditional healers and the general public, through publications, seminars and workshops.

1. Research

The department conducts research in the thematic areas prioritized by the University. The following are some of the ongoing research projects in the department, clustered to respective thematic areas

HIV and AIDS

  1. Search for Antifungal Compounds from Tanzanian Medicinal Plants for managing Fungal infections
  2. Formulation and standardization of herbal medicine from Garcinia and Combretum plant species growing in Tanzania for managing HIV/AIDS and related diseases
  3. Phytochemical and Antifungal Investigation of Tanzanian Combretum Species for Potential Formulations against Fungal Infections
  4. Laboratory and semi-field mosquito larvicidal activity of some Tanzanian medicinal plants formulations
  5. Investigation of chemical composition and mosquito repellent property of essential oils from some Tanzanian plants

Malaria

  1. Laboratory and semi-field mosquito larvicidal activity of some Tanzanian medicinal plants formulations
  2. Investigation of chemical composition and mosquito repellent property of essential oils from some Tanzanian plants

 

Health System Research

  1. Empowering Tanzanian Communities to achieve economic sustainability and resilience. A trainer of trainer approach for value addition of Avocado and Rosella products

 

2. Training Programmes

The department of Natural Products Development and Formulation is involved in training of MSc and PhD progrmames in Traditional Medicine Development. The department jointly with other departments’ runs one master program (MSc. Traditional Medicine Development) teaching the course named Phytochemical Processes in Herbal Drugs Development (TM 603). The department is also involved in  short course training programmes for Health Practitioners

3.  Consultancy

The department offers consultancies in the following areas

  1. Phyrochemical screening of active ingredients from medicinal plants
  2. Formulation and standardization of herbal medicine
  3. Antioxidant assays

Department of Medical Botany, Plant Breeding and Agronomy

The department of Medical Botany, Plant Breeding and Agronomy is one of the three departments of the Institute of Traditional Medicine. It was established in 2006.it is charged with handling major activities including taxonomic identification and documentation of plants which are used by Traditional Healers and Traditional Birth Attendants, conduction of economic mapping of the spontaneous flora of Tanzania to identify the qualitative and quantitative genetic resources in medicinal and aromatic plants, promotion on conservation of medicinal and aromatic plant biodiversity in the country based on realistic in-situ and ex-situ sustainable programmes, agrobiological studies on medicinal and aromatic plants growing in the spontaneous flora in order to establish the ecophysiological and agrotechnological requirements needed for commercial exploitation, enhancement of the cultivation of important medicinal and aromatic plants to facilitate a sustainable economic harvesting of the natural resources without jeopardising the genetic germplasm, genetic, pathological, entomological and biochemical studies on      prospective medicinal and aromatic plants in order to realise a sustainable utilization of medicinal/aromatic plants. Other activities include development and maintainnance of a rich herbarium of medicinal and aromatic plants for research, teaching and retrieval purposes, and to disseminate ethnobotanical and agronomical research information to scientists, students, traditional healers and general public through publications, seminars, pamphlets and workshops.

 

The research carried out at the department has helped to generate rich data on different disciplines. For example, currently over 5000 records and about 1500 species of medicinal plants are recorded. The study on distribution of some potential medicinal plants such as Prunus africana was done whereas their distribution was established. There is ex-situ conservation program of some exotic medicinal plants in the institute farms in Tanga, Coast and Arusha regions. The agronomic studies of some native plants of Tanzania such as Hypoxis, Orchids and Aloes is being done as such, some exotic species such as Artemisia, Hybiscus, Cynara, Pimpinella, Saponaria and Glycirrhiza  are grown at the institute medicinal farms in Lushoto, Arusha and Kongowe. About 4500 records of the herbarium are already digitalized and shared with the TanBIF. Some framers in Kongowe ward ware trained on good agricultural practices. The Molecular lab laboratory has been established for plant DNA barcoding and there is living collection of Aloe and Hypoxis species at the background of ITM building.

 

Future plans of the department includes establishment of medicinal plants Botanical garden, establishment of department of medical anthropology and recruitment of more staff with specialties in the areas of plant systematic, agronomy, medical anthropology, plant breeding, agriculture and botany.

1.Research currently carried out by the department

  1. Growth appraisal and performance of Hypoxis species in Lushoto Medicinal farm
  2. Propagation tests of Glycirrhiza glabra and Pimpinella anisum in Lushoto and Meru/USA in Arusha
  3. Trial cultivation of wild collected Artemisia affra in Lushoto medicinal farm
  4. Comparison of the yield per stem for Hypoxis spp in Lushoto farm

2.Training programme

The department is involved in training Post Graduate students where the courses offered are:

  1.  TM 601: Traditional and Alternative Health Care Systems
  2. TM 602: Medical Botany, Biosystematics, and Plant Breeding.

 3.Community outreach

  1. There is collaborative farming where local communities in Lushoto and Arusha Olmotonyi are involved in contractual cultivation of some medicinal plants such as Hibiscus subdariffa, Plantago lanceolata, Cynara Scolymus, Artemisia affra, Artemisia annua, Pimpinella anisum, Glycirhiza glabra etc for production of herbal medicines at the institute.

 

Department of Biological and Pre-Clinical Studies

The department is one of the three departments of the Institute of Traditional Medicine (ITM) involved in research, training and consultancy services. The Department has six academic members of staff as follows: Associate Research Professors (2), Research Fellows (2), Assistant Lecturer (1) and Tutorial Assistant (1). In addition, there are two technical staffs; a technician and laboratory assistant.

Major Functions

(i) Screening of herbs collected from traditional healers to establish the presence of pharmacological activity.

(ii) To carry out toxicological, pharmacokinetic and toxic kinetic studies on plants used by traditional healers to treat various ailments and generate knowledge which will form the basis for:

  • Assessment of the safety of different natural products used in the country.
  • Recommendation to the public on the safety of different natural products used by Traditional Healers.
  • Regulatory approval of newly developed formulations or drugs

(iii) To search for reliable, simple and reproducible bioassays for preliminary general screening of crude drug preparations.

(iv) To identify the mechanism of action of natural products used by Traditional Healers and suggest possible lines of development of products from isolated active compounds.

(v) To carry out standardization of indigenous and exotic medicinal plant products.

(vi) To collaborate with the Department of Natural Products Chemistry in the Bio-assay guided fractionation and    isolation of active compounds from plant extracts.

 

In future, the Institute and the department intend to establish a related Department of Clinical Evaluation that will be responsible to carry out the following functions:

(i) To plan and conduct clinical trials to establish the efficacy of traditional medicines within ethical and scientific requirements.

(ii) To monitor the practice by traditional healers as a means to regulate the practice and identify effective therapies which can be taken up for drug development.

(iii) To monitor short term and long term toxicities due to traditional medicines.

 (iv) To support regulatory approval of developed drugs by generating the clinical data needed for drug approval.

 

1. Research

HIV/AIDS Projects:

HIV research work involves various plants including of the genus Combretum, Terminalia, Garcinia, Carissa. These species have been earmarked as potential sources of bioactive anti-HIV-1 compounds. Screening of the crude extracts, fractions and isolated compounds for antimicrobials, cytotoxicity (BST), for HIV-1 PR and RT inhibition and HIV-1 neutralization activities are on-going activities.

In-vivo and in-vitro antimalarial testing:

In-vivo testing for antimalarial activity using the Plasmodium berghei model in mice has been strengthened by involving PhD students. Two academic staffs have attended training on malaria parasite culturing techniques. In addition, basic equipments for in-vitro anti-malarial testing have been procured and a laboratory dedicated for cell culture work has been established.

Pest and vector control for health and crop protection.

Studies geared into isolation of active compounds for pest and vector control for health and crop protection have been initiated. Facilities to test for mosquitocidal activities have been established whereby there are three on-going projects. One of the projects is seeking to isolate compounds and formulate mosquito larvicidal agents. The other two projects are searching for botanicals for crop protection in collaboration with Sokoine University of Agriculture.

Antimicrobial testing:

This program mainly involves in vitro and in vivo evaluation of plant extracts and isolated compounds against bacteria and fungi. An in vivo model of Candida infection in mice was developed and in vitro microtitre assays for bacteria and fungi. The programme also involves collaboration with clinicians in the area of clinical trials of antifungal agents, and in vitro studies using clinical oral Candida isolates.

Cytotoxicity testing:

The brine shrimp lethality assay is a well-established preliminary test for toxicity, but also a screening tool for possible anticancer activity as well as other non-specific biological activities. The Institute of Traditional Medicine has continued collaboration with National Institute for Cancer (NCI) for joint research on Phyllanthus engleri, a promising anticancer source of englerins A and B. Englerin A which has shown 1,000-fold selectivity against six of eight renal cancer cell lines.

Anti convulsant testing: 

Testing for anticonvulsant activity using the chemical-induced convulsions model with picrotoxin and pentylenetetrazol are well established at the Department. This is one of the areas which generated publications and further activities are ongoing in Mahenge District and at the Institute with the support of Sida.

Anti-TB Natural Products research:

Search for anti-TB compounds from Tanzanian medicinal plants is an on-going process. Two anti-TB assays have been established: Whole cell inhibition assay (using Mtb marker organisms), and the enzyme assay which inhibits Mycothione reductase redox cycle. Furthermore, various analytical instruments for the assays have been procured.

Anti-ulcers research

Currently several models of anti-ulcer studies have been in use. The Ethanol/Hydrochloric acid, aspirin and indomethacin models have been used to induce gastric ulcers in rats. Using these models, several plant species were tested for their protective effect and some were found to be gastro-protective. The Department is intending to develop other peptic ulcer models to facilitate understanding the mechanisms of antiulcer activity of plant extracts. Helicobacter pylori  is implicated in peptic ulcer disease and therefore testing herbal extracts against this bacterium can provide an additional information regarding the use of medicinal plants in the treatment of peptic ulcers. The Department is now in the process of getting the standard strains of this bacterium so as to be used as a screening tool.

 

Anti-diabetes research

The Oral glucose Tolerance Test (OGTT) is commonly used to screen medicinal plants with oral hypoglycaemic potential.  A number of publications have been obtained through the research works in this area.

 

2. Training programme

The department participates in training of postgraduate students; by teaching three modules namely TM 604-1 Basic Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Techniques, TM 604-2 General Principles of the Quantitative and Qualitative aspects of Drug Action, and TM 604-3 Pre-Clinical Safety Testing and Good Laboratory Practice to MSc Traditional Medicine Development Programme students as well as PhD students. The members of staff in the department are also involved in teaching of short course on Traditional Medicine Development to Traditional Health Practitioners every year. The senior staffs are also involved in supervision of both Masters Dissertations and PhD Theses.

 

3. Consultancy

Some of the consultancies which have been done include evaluation of medicinal plants for anti-ulcer activity and evaluation of a dental formula.  Other areas of consultancy include training of Traditional Health Practitioners and conducting different bioassays that are available in the department.

Contact US

INSTITUTE OF TRADITIONAL MEDICINE
P.O. Box 65001, Dar es Salaam,
E-mail: ditm@muhas.ac.tz
Direct Line: 21500096, 2150302-6 Ext 216, 2150302-6 Ext. 262