Doctor of Traditional Chinese Medicine Nobel Prize Winner For Malaria Drug Artemisinin

A recipient of the Nobel Prize for Medicine this year is Youyou Tu.  Dr. Tu re-discovered and developed the malaria treatment Artemisinin while working at the Academy of Traditional Chinese Medicine.  When conventional treatment for malaria were declining in efficacy by the 1960s, Dr. Tu went to the classical Chinese medical text, Handbook of Prescriptions For Emergencies, by Ge Hong, which was written circa 300AD where the remedy for malaria was noted as a particular  component from the wormwood species Artemisia.  When this extract is used with combination therapy, mortality is reduced by 20% and over 30% in children (as noted in the Financial Times article dated Oct 6, 2015).  According to research by the Financial Times, over 100,000 lives are saved annually by this drug in Africa alone.

Today, malaria pills are given to travelers to begin ingesting two days prior to travelling to any region of the world where there is a chance of contracting malaria.  One pill per day and continued for a week after return from affected regions will keep a person safe from this deadly disease.

Thank you, Dr. Tu and Ge Hong, for your great contribution to the world.  I hold a Master’s Degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine, and with this education comes the study of Chinese Herbal Medicine.  I have studied and mastered the art of Chinese Herbology and have studied Western Pharmacology simultaneously.  So, when I ask you for a list of medications, I pore over them to ensure I am giving you the best treatment possible. When I prescribe herbal remedies, I know the contraindications and antagonisms associated with taking these formulas simultaneously with your western prescriptions.

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