We define as herbal medicines the drug products of plant origin elaborated with standardized extracts. A herbal medicine is elaborated through a complex chemical process, aiming to concentrate active principles of the plant in one extract. Chemical standardization assures the level of active principles to obtain a pharmacological activity.
It is important to highlight the extract standardization requires cutting-edge analytical technology. The process must assure each pill or capsule contains the same chemical profile, the same level of active principles. Therefore, it is possible to assure the phytomedicine conforms to the same 3 criteria featuring a synthetic drug product: efficiency, quality and safety: essential criteria to obtain the registration with the competent regulatory body (ANVISA, FDA, EMEA).
One of Aché's main Innovation Platforms, Bioprospera® aims to discover and develop innovative medicines based on natural sources, especially Brazilian biodiversity, which is the largest and most diverse in the world. Brazil has about 22% of the planet's plant biodiversity, in addition to rich ethnobotanical knowledge. The platform is based on two approaches to discover active natural molecules and extracts: (i) Ethnopharmacology and (ii) Bioprospecting. Using scientific rigor, the first unveils the pharmacological and toxicological effects described for medicinal plants through the application of systematic bioanalytical techniques. The second, Bioprospection, begins with expeditions and collections of samples from different biomes. On the Bioprospecting front, Aché works in partnership with the company Phytobios and the research institute CNPEM - National Center for Research in Energy and Materials, where the library of natural products from Brazilian biodiversity and state-of-the-art analytical instrumentation are located, such as Sirius, the largest and most complex scientific equipment in Brazil, a fourth generation particle accelerator. The two projects that Aché has in partnership with Phytobios and CNPEM have the primary objective of discovering and developing new drugs in the areas of oncology and dermatology.