ISSN (Print): 1570-1638
ISSN (Online): 1875-6220
Volume 19, 6 Issues, 2022
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ISSN (Print): 1570-1638
ISSN (Online): 1875-6220
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"Modern drug discovery is increasingly driven by scientific integration, the ability to pull together seemingly unrelated branches of basic and applied sciences to produce in a timely fashion innovative and efficacious solutions to multidisciplinary human health problems. The editorial staff is to be congratulated for providing a superb forum for publishing such science and the many and varied new directions that challenge how we think about and address drug discovery."
Paul A. Wender
Stanford University, USA
Persian Medicine as a Holistic Therapeutic Approach
Guest Editor(s): Mehdi Pasalar
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I would like to express my sincere thanks for the services by Bentham Science.
I'm really happy with my submission in your Journal and hope that I will able to continue submitting manuscripts to your journal.
(Department of Basic Medical Sciences, Neyshabur University of Medical Sciences, Neyshabur, Iran
Has contributed: Anti-Carcinogenic Effects of Carnosol-An Updated Review
4 Abstract Ahead of Print are available electronically
8 Articles Ahead of Print are available electronically
The antiquity of medicine is as long as the history it self, with various schools of medicine developed with the universal
goals of preserving health, minimizing human suffering, and boosting the quality and duration of life. When examining the history
of science, we see prominent medical schools such as traditional Chinese medicine, traditional Indian medicine (Ayurveda),
Persian medicine, and so on. With a history of several thousand years, Persian medicine represents a traditional medical
school that has delivered remarkable contributions to human civilization . One distinguished contribution is the establishment
of the first university in the world, Jundishapur, which dates back to 1750 years ago and included several hundred thousand
books in its library . A number of renowned scholars like Avicenna, Rhazes, Jorjani, Aghili Shirazi, etc., by adopting a
scientific approach and building on the findings of those before them, introduced a branch of medicine in Iran based on
knowledge, wisdom, and experience, which, unlike common medicine, features a holistic view . Contrary to the positivist
view that relies purely upon sensory experience for all medical data, Persian medicine believes in the immense complexity of
the human body and its various organs, providing a detailed analysis of the various physical reactions at a larger scale. Therefore,
Persian medicine examines disease and health through a much broader lens and introduces different strategies for the
treatment of diseases like preventive health, food therapy, herbal medicine, hands-on physical manipulations, etc. . Recent
studies in traditional, complementary and alternative medicine have provided evidence in favor of the relative success of the
holistic view compared with the positivist view [5, 6]. Since 2008, academic Persian medicine, as one of the specialized medical
disciplines in Iran, has been pursuing a scientific path in proving the efficacy of the holistic view in the treatment of diseases
. This special issue of the Current Drug Discovery Technologies Journal, comprised of the work of Persian medicine researchers
from different parts of the world and examines a part of Persian medicine that deals with medicinal herbs, which can
be studied and trialed as novel treatments for common non-communicable diseases in line with the holistic knowledge of this
school of medicine. Perhaps in the not-so-distant future, these agents may be used in treating diseases or symptoms like osteoarthritis,
functional dyspepsia, cough, and so on [8-10].
Infectious diseases have plagued mankind since ancient times. Ancient civilizations relied largely on a variety of herbal and
herbomineral formulations to combat infections. Later the twentieth century saw the dawn of antibiotic era. Antibiotics helped
us greatly in combating pathogenic microbes, however, emergence of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and its promiscuous exchange
among pathogenic populations has brought us to a situation, where we are left with a limited number of effective antibiotics,
and already quite a few pan-drug-resistant strains have started posing a formidable health challenge before us. Infections
caused by resistant strains and microbial biofilms are causing a large number of deaths throughout the globe, and concerted
efforts at a global scale are necessary [https://amr-review.org/].
Discovery of new antimicrobial agents is failing to keep pace with rapid emergence of AMR among pathogenic microorganisms,
and there is a realistic threat of mankind losing this battle. Conventional bactericidal antibiotics exert strong selection
pressure on target microbes, leading to rapid emergence of resistant phenotypes. Hence besides the continuous discovery of
new bactericidal antibiotics, alternative non-antibiotic approaches also need to be pursued actively. Identifying new targets (e.g.
quorum sensing, riboswitches, transcriptional regulators, metal homeostasis, etc.) in pathogenic microbial cells/ populations,
and new leads for developing novel anti-infective/ anti-virulence agents is the need of the hour. This is about a paradigm shift
from targeting pathogen to targeting pathogenicity.
While researchers throughout the globe are focusing their antimicrobial research specifically on WHO (World Health Organization)/
CDC (Centers for Disease Control)- listed antibiotic-resistant bacteria [https://www.cdc.gov/drugresistance/ biggest-
-are-urgently-needed], antibiotic-resistant fungal and protozoan pathogens remain equally grave challenges. Discovery of new
effective antiviral agents is still more daunting task. Fulfilling the criteria of ‘selective toxicity’ becomes much more difficult
while developing new antiviral/ antifungal/ anti-protozoal agents, as compared to antibacterials.
We may never fully win the battle against microbial infections, but a lot needs to be done to ensure that we do not lose this
battle. This thematic issue features review papers from researchers working on varied aspects of discovery and development of
novel anti-infective agents. It will be an informative and useful read for all stakeholders. Besides the contributing authors and
the publisher, I sincerely thank the reviewers who selflessly devoted their valued time in fulfilling their role as Sentinel of
Mother nature has blessed mankind with vast treasures of botanical wealth, endowed with infinite healing potential. For centuries,
the recognition of the medicinal properties of plants had been limited to folklore and complementary medicine. The promulgation of
herbal medicine has been largely propelled by the lacunae of synthetic drugs in addressing the medical needs of the people. Modern
times have witnessed a dramatic increase in patients suffering from various lethal and debilitating disorders as well as infections. The
adverse effects associated with the use of synthetic medicines and their limited antimicrobial potential, in view of emerging infections
and microbial resistance, are matters of grave concern. The inquest of present day researchers towards safer and more effective treatment
alternatives has revived their interest in herbal drugs and brought them into mainstream.
Current Drug Discovery Technologies is dedicated to bringing forth the advancements that are taking place in the domain of drug
discovery. The present issue entitled ‘Herbal Drugs: Expanding Horizons of Contemporary Therapeutics’ has been brought about
with the objective of shedding light on the therapeutic properties of a various medicinal plants and their phytoconstituents, use of
plant derived products in formulation development of biomedicals, technological advancements in the production of herbal drug
products and the regulatory aspects concerning them. This thematic issue comprises of six articles by experts who have reviewed
herbal drugs from the perspective of offering an enlarged field of solutions to satisfy current medical needs. Gallo and Bucalá have
contributed a comprehensive article that discusses spray drying technology employed to produce dried medicinal plant extracts. The
paper specifically focuses on the effect of different process parameters on the quality and yield of extracts, and will serve as a guide
for researchers to reduce the time required for spray drying of extracts and economize the production process .
Sickle cell disease is a genetic condition characterized by a high degree of debility. It is endemic in Nigeria, and Alli and coworkers
provided an insight into the herbal remedies used to ameliorate its symptoms. Also, they wrote an in-depth account on the limitations
of these drugs, from the viewpoint of epigenetic interactions, to reactivate the gammaglobulin genes to strengthen the immune
response in patients .
Essential oils are secondary plant metabolites obtained from aromatic flora, containing numerous phytoconstituents with many
therapeutic probabilities. Sharma and colleagues wrote an elaborate review on the potential of citronella oil to circumvent as well as
treat a myriad of diseases. The paper includes a section on novel drug delivery systems formulated with citronella oil and toxicity
concerns pertaining to its use . Panda and Kumari delved into the plant kingdom to present an overview of anti- ophidian properties
of herbal medicinal agents. These agents are a safer alternative to treat snake bites, which are health concerns in many parts of the
world. Phytochemicals with anti- ophidian properties can be explored to avoid the adverse effects of immunotherapy .
Plants have not only been a source of bioactives but also provided many compounds to aid formulation development. Chakraborty
and co- authors came up with a detailed account on the physicochemical properties of native starch, due to which it has found application
to serve as an excipient in design and development of advanced delivery systems, including nanoscale devices .
The expanding role of herbal drugs in contemporary medicine calls for robust regulatory framework. In light of the quality control
difficulties and lack of data regarding their safety and efficacy, regulatory bodies around the globe must ensure strict legislative control
on their marketing and utilization. The article by Bhat and colleagues makes an attempt to apprise the readers about the herbal
drug regulations existing in some countries and the differences therein .
I hope that this thematic issue will enlighten the readers on some of the important aspects of herbal medicines and the realm of
possibilities that these offer to the pharmaceutical scientists.