Recent research findings on Jamaican plant extracts, which were analysed to determine their potential to prevent and treat five types of cancers, will be the focal point of a presentation by renowned Jamaican scientist, Dr. Henry Lowe and his Maryland based research partner, Dr. Joseph Bryant. The results of the research will be presented to a small gathering of scientific/medical professionals and specially invited guests, at Eden Gardens in Kingston on Tuesday, December 12.
Plants are a traditional source of medicinal compounds. Today, they account for up to forty per cent of modern drugs. The research findings to be disclosed by Dr. Lowe and his team are expected to join the ranks of international breakthrough on cancer studies.
Dr. Lowe, who specializes in medicinal chemistry, shared his excitement about the status of the study, “My partners and I are extremely happy with the results and feel that based on issues related to patents and funding, this is the appropriate time to share the information with the Jamaican community.
He pointed out that the research started from humble beginnings when he was Head of the Science Department at CAST (now UTECH).
Dr. Lowe continued, “We hope that our research, which is centred around indigenous Jamaican plant species, will be viewed as another step toward the development of Jamaica’s natural resources for medicinal purposes. We look forward to building on the work done on the periwinkle plant, as well as that on the ganja plant, with which I was one of the foundation researchers with Drs. West and Lockhart.”
Dr. Lowe’s track record in the fields of science and technology, the environment, wellness and the health sciences spans approximately 40 years. This includes several notable contributions for which he continues to be recognized. A former Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment, he established the first Ministry of its kind in the CARICOM region. He is the Past President and former CEO of Blue Cross of Jamaica, and now serves as its Chairman. Dr. Lowe is also the Executive Chairman of the Environmental Health Foundation, as well as Eden Gardens, the first Wellness and Lifestyle Centre in the Caribbean. Dr. Lowe has served locally, regionally, and internationally in several Board capacities and as Advisor and Consultant.
Dr. Lowe’s research partner, Dr. Joseph Bryant is Director of the Animal Models Division and the Animal Core Facility at the University of Maryland Biotechnology Institute, now a part of the medical school at the University. Dr. Bryant’s background is in comparative medicine and his research team has created the first transgenic (genetically modified) rats, opening up a new world of opportunity for the study of HIV/AIDS and cancer in humans.
The presentation will also include a discussion on the legal implications of Dr. Lowe’s research by patent attorney Mr. Royal Craig, who is based in Baltimore, Maryland.
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