Eighty-five research projects on traditional herbal medicine have been developed to help contain the coronavirus pandemic in Iran, an advisor to the traditional medicine office at the Ministry of Health, has announced.
Some 23 projects have been submitted to the Ministry of Health, and 3 projects to the Scientific Committee of the National Headquarters for Coronavirus Control, Arman Zargaran noted, ISNA reported on Sunday.
Emphasizing that none of the plans claim treatment to the disease and are considered only to help patients, he said that some of these medicinal herbs were even able to halve the hospitalization period and help patients recover faster.
Studies in cooperation with several research centers have been conducted to use the achievements in the fight against the pandemic, Zargaran stated.
He went on to note that in a step taken to reduce the burden of the disease, a center offering traditional medicine services to coronavirus patients was inaugurated in Tehran’s Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences in early November.
Iran, like any other countries in the world, has been involved in research to identify a solution to contain the pandemic, scientists are trying to play a role in the production of effective medicine in the treatment of various diseases, including COVID-19, despite sanctions and global pressures.
Meanwhile, the Food and Drug Administration has approved four domestically produced herbal medicine effective in COVID-19 treatment and has issued a production license for two of them.
The first herbal medicine in this collection is an oral spray containing six herbal essential oils and helps to improve the pulmonary complications of coronavirus, including shortness of breath, cough, and arterial oxygenation.
The second one is a syrup containing the extract of two herbs, which according to the clinical trial evidence provided if used, helps to improve the symptoms of fatigue and anorexia.
Pangolin are the world’s most illegally trafficked animal. They are being poached for their scales, which are in high demand by Asian markets for use in traditional medicine. Some studies had indicated that bats and pangolins were the culprits in COVID-19 transmission to humans. pic.twitter.com/j3J2BZfTYZ— The Historian (@Historian_Zed) December 21, 2020
8,000 herbal species grow in Iran
So far, about 30,000 plant species are identified in the world, with Iran's share of about 8,000 species that its plant diversity is more than the whole of Europe.
Currently, about 2,300 species of medicinal plants have been identified in the country; while medicinal plants account for one-third of the medicines used in human societies, the share of world trade in these products is about $124 billion and Iran’s share is $570 million, which is only 0.5 percent of the total.
The per capita consumption of medicinal plants in Iran is about one kilogram of dried plants, in other words, 83,000 tons of medicinal plants worth 1.2 trillion rials (around $29 million at the official rate of 42,000 rials) are consumed in the country, while in Europe this amount is 900 grams and in the United States is 2.5 kilograms.
COVID-19 death toll, new cases
In a press briefing on Sunday, Lari confirmed 5,760 new cases of COVID-19 infection, raising the total number of infections to 1,194,963. She added that 942,548 patients have so far recovered, but 5,273 still remain in critical conditions of the disease.
During the past 24 hours, 134 patients have lost their lives, bringing the total number of deaths to 54,574, she added.
So far, 7,354,931 COVID-19 diagnostic tests have been performed in the country.
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