Home > Current Events > Year 2010 August
A review of stories making the headlines.

Chinese patent traditional medicine first time passes FDA crucial clinical trials
English.news.cn, 7 August 2010

Compound Danshen Dripping Pill produced by Tasly Pharmaceutical had passed Phase II clinical trials of FDA in the U.S., one step closer to getting into the U.S. and European drug market. "Clinical trials were conducted at 15 centers in the U.S. over the last three years and had "generated positive results," president of the company Yan Xijun said. With domestic sales of more than one billion yuan last year, the drug was the first Chinese patent traditional medicine to pass Phase II trials of FDA, known for its strictness in approving drugs. It has also approved to enter the Phase III trials. The drug is mainly used to treat angina and coronary heart diseases, which had been approved by drug watchdogs in Canada, Russia, Republic of Korea, Vietnam, Singapore and some African countries.

Exports of traditional Chinese medicine hit 1.46 billion: health official
English.news.cn, 7 August 2010

"Exports of TCM in global market were valued at 1.46 billion U.S. dollars," Wang Guoqiang director of the State Administration of TCM said. TCM are mostly mixtures or medical plants which make them difficult to explain and analyze in a quantitative sense than western drugs. For the drug companies, one major obstacle to obtain market approval in the U.S. and European countries is how to explain the drug effects in a scientific language that appeals to Westerners. China has so far signed more than 90 pacts that partially or exclusively touched on TCM cooperation with more than 70 countries and regions.

Should I stay or should I go?
Global Times, 16 August 2010

More oversea students are coming to China studying TCM, however, their dreams of becoming licensed TCM doctors in their home countries are not easy. Statistics show that TCM has been introduced in at least 162 countries, but countries that recognize TCM diplomas from Chinese universities are much fewer. Fu Yanling, dean of the International School at Beijing University of Chinese Medicine said "our diploma is recognized in the US, Singapore and Malaysia, but not in South Korea and Japan where more than 90% of the oversea students come from." Foreign TCM students usually have three options after graduation - returning home, staying in China, or going to a third country to further their study or career, Fu said.

China medicine proves tonic for investors
Financial Times, 17 August 2010

Shanghai Hutchison Pharmaceuticals is capitalizing on surging demand for TCM, which is attracting businesses and investors domestically and abroad. Zhou Jun Jie, general manager of the company says TCM is growing just as rapidly as the fast-expanding Chinese market for western pharmaceuticals íV at about 20% per year. His company's sales rose by a third to $18m in the first half this year. As China grows wealthier, there is greater demand for medicines of all types. While not all plants are cheap, common products are often more affordable than western-style drugs, and their long-term use offers the prospect of sustained sales.

Chinese medicine group set to establish clinics in MSAR
Macau Daily Times, 18 August 2010

The Chinese medicine group MiLOC is entering the London stock market in an attempt to get enough capital to invest in Macau and Hong Kong clinics. The company's chief executive Michael Ong said their goal is to buy existing clinics and upgrade them to Western standards. MiLOC is hoping for a GBP 4 million cash injection from its listing on AIM, a sub-market of the London Stock Exchange. The Hong Kong-based group currently researches and manufactures Chinese medicine pharmaceuticals and health products.

Ancient Chinese Brew May Reduce Chemotherapy Damage
The Daily Disclosure, 18 August 2010

Researchers published a paper in Science Translational Medicine that said that an ancient Chinese brew may reduce the intestinal damage rectal and colon cancer patients often suffer after having chemotherapy. The 1,800 year old formula contains licorice, skullcap, peonies, and fruit from the buckthorn tree. In the study, a laboratory formulation was fed to cancerous mice after they had been treated with irinotecan that causes diarrhea and is known to be toxic to the gut. After a few days of treatment, the rodents damaged intestinal linings were restored. The brew, which is called Huang Qin Tang, has been used for centuries to treat nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. According to Yung-Chi Cheng of the Yale University School of Medicine, when the formulation is used in combination with chemotherapy it also reduces tumor growth.

HKBU Hosts Meeting on Globalization of Chinese Medicine
Hong Kong Baptist University, 23 August 2010

About 600 scholars, research experts and entrepreneurs in Chinese medicine from around the world gather in Hong Kong to participate in the 9th Meeting of the Consortium for Globalization of Chinese Medicine (CGCM). Organized by the School of Chinese Medicine of HKBU, the meeting generates insights and plans on the future development of Chinese medicine worldwide as well as enhances the advancement of Chinese medicine in the areas of education, research, provision of medical services and product development. It also contributes greatly to the protection of traditional Chinese medicine, which has been regarded as part of Hong Kong's intangible cultural heritage.

Traditional Chinese medicine products growing popular in Singapore
English.news.cn, 26 August 2010

In Singapore, the imports of Chinese medicine, Chinese health supplements and related products such as ginseng and chicken essence went up from 1.1 billion Singapore dollars in 2007 to 1.6 billion last year, a 45% increase. Imports come mostly from China, while the rest are from Taiwan and Malaysia. The demand has grown steadily since the beginning of the decade, when more stringent industry regulations in China and Singapore kicked in and boosted consumer confidence.

Compiled By:
Rose Tse, Integrated Chinese Medicine Holdings Ltd.