Programme description
The M.Sc. Medicinal Plants Research and Drug Development programme is one of the programmes run by Pan African Life and Earth Sciences Institute (Including health and Agriculture) PAULESI.

Structure of the programme
The duration for the award of Master of Science (M.Sc.) Medicinal Plant and Drug Development shall for two years (four semesters). The first two semesters shall be for course work while the last two semesters shall be for internship and Research Thesis.

Rationale for the programmes
Majority of Africa still depend on medicinal plants in the management of ailments especially at the primary health care level. Many of these plants have not been studied and harnessed for the development of the continent for the production of healthy individuals and the economy. Many traditional systems in other climes are already marketing herbal products in Africa to the detriment of our economy. It is therefore urgent and imperative that Africa develop the capacity to use her own resources to manage herself and the world thereby achieving sufficiency in her health management. It is also a fact that many orthodox drugs have been developed from many African plants by foreign experts. In addition, rapid urbanization is also depleting the African flora. It is therefore important that Africans acquire expertise to develop the natural resources in the continent. The establishment of PAN – African University is a giant step towards achieving the development of human resources in general with such areas as medicinal plant research and drug development being a good focus. 

Programme objectives
The main objectives of the programme are to:
a.    Train students in methods of scientific enquiry for academic and research 
b.    Provide training and skills on the various medicinal plants and phytochemical techniques towards producing man-power for herbal drug industry and/or pharmaceutical research institutes/laboratories, herbal hospitals whether in government or private organizations, within and outside Africa
c.    Equip students with modern trends in medicinal plant research with emphasis on drug discovery.
d.    Producing new entrepreneurs in the field of herbal medicine (formulation, packaging, marketing etc)
e.    Produce experts experienced in emerging areas such as clinical pharmacognosy, herb-orthodox drug interaction etc

Expected Outcomes
1.    At the end of the programme the graduates are expected to demonstrate the following learning outcomes:
2.    Expertise in phytochemistry, herbal drug formulation, standardization and quality control of herbal drugs, medicinal plant research, and cultivation of medicinal plants with the aim of probing into plants for alternative sources of drug and raw materials for pharmaceutical industries.

3.    Expertise in compiling herbal pharmacopoeia in their respective countries.

4.    Ability to produce evidence based and standard herbal drugs for the management of ailments and the market.

5.    Identify and document plants that are useful as agricultural (pest control), veterinary and human medicines in various regions of Africa based on ethnomedical studies.

6.    Adequate skills in the propagation and cultivation of medicinal plants for international trade and conservation of potential endangered species.

7.    Expertise in the organization and setting up of herbal clinics in relevant communities. 

8.    Individual, team and multidisciplinary working: – Students work individually or in group in focus group discussion, in the laboratory and during field survey.
9.    Medicinal Plants Research: – Students engage in final project work in the laboratory under their supervisors.

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