Jan 11, 2014

Dr. Abdul Kalam's Address at the Inauguration of Vaidyaratnam Ayurveda Museum Thaikkattussery, Thrissur, Dec 27 2013

"Ayurveda research: prevention and cure in a natural way"
I am delighted to participate in the Inauguration of the Vaidyaratnam Ayurveda Museum at Thaikkattusseri. My greetings to Ashtavaidyan Narayanan Mooss and the Doctors, medical professionals, healthcare specialists, practitioners of Ayurveda, paramedical staff, students and distinguished guests on this occasion. I hope that you all know, the history of Vaidyarathnam Oushdhasala which got its title in 1924 from Britishers and their noble services in the field of Ayurvedic medicines. It is indeed very important to preserve the rich and varied tradition of Ayurveda by creating a museum to exhibit the unparalleled knowledge of Ayurveda through the valuable literatures, scriptures and manuscripts from traditional ayurveda. Keeping all the ancient scriptures in digital format will be an added advantage. I am very happy to see the museum building set up with a Saraswathi Mandapam in a traditional way. In addition I understand Vaidyaratnam Oushadasala has a well equipped R&D Lab to monitor the production and standardization of Ayurvedic medicines along with Drug research, clinical research and pharma research with modern equipments. I appreciate the initiative of the Vaidyaratnam group?s service to the society by conducting medical camps, pain and palliative clinics. I am sure soon this Museum will become an important attractive destination for tourists from India and abroad, and it will contribute to Medical Tourism in Kerala. My greetings to all of you. In this ambience, let me talk a few minutes on the topic "Ayurveda research: prevention and cure in a natural way".

Health: It's pivotal role in development
Our young India with 1.25 billion population of which 50% below the age of 30 years need to be transformed as a valuable asset by providing them adequate healthcare, education and occupation. This human resource will then transform India into a developed nation. The healthcare delivery cannot depend only on the Allopathic healthcare but need to harness the time tested Indian traditional systems of medicines, including Ayurveda.
India was a knowledge power a few thousands years ago, giving to the world Vedas, Upanishad, Bhagavat Gita, Yoga and Ayurveda. Before the evolution of the Allopathic healthcare system, our people in India relied on Ayurveda for a few thousands of years. Ayurveda is a Science and Art. Its practitioners focused on holistic healthcare through Mind, Body and Soul approach. It is time for us to place this ancient science and medical practice on a scientific pedestal.

Ayurveda a best form of prevention of disease
Ayurveda's basic foundation is consciousness and holistic approach to healthcare. Consciousness is unbounded and infinite which creates those vibrations, which are the laws of nature. These laws of nature are structured in consciousness, they are not man-made. They are eternal, and they are everywhere as quantum knowledge. These laws of nature function through the structure of DNA through different species. All DNA is basically the same, the same four base pairs that repeat themselves. But the majority of DNA is not active. The part which is active is expressed through these laws of nature, through these vibrations. This will be different in different species. Then, as the consciousness is charging up the DNA, what happens? These vibrations, or fluctuations of consciousness, get materialized. That ultimately produces the body, whether it is an animal body, or plant body, or human body or the planets, the cosmos, or whatever.
Now, in the human body, different laws of nature materialize at different rates, and that creates different organ systems like liver, or kidney. Each one of them is working at a different vibration. If these vibrations are distorted, and they are not in the right frequency, either due to psychic disturbances in the mind, or due to food, drink, the environment, or other influences, it distorts the vibrations of these organs. When the vibrations do not work properly the structure which was originally formed has different vibrations. Now it is not working at the same vibration, and hence it is diseased.
Health can be maintained and disease can be prevented. Though technology is advancing, people are still falling sick. Health care costs keep on increasing, and there is no way to reduce that unless you introduce prevention. The best prevention is through Ayurveda, because it is a very comprehensive system, since it is based on natural medicine, which is devoid of toxicity. It is indeed a challenge to Ayurveda.
Even the Tamil Poet Thiruvalluvar mentions about prevention of disease in a Kural written 2000 years ago:
"Marundena Venda Mantharku
Arundhiyathu attru unnin"

மருந்தன வேண்டா மாந்தர்க்கு
அருந்தியது அற்று உணின்
That means You don't need any medicine provided you eat to your appetite and also the right kind of food after it is fully digested.
Hence, the challenge before us is, how Ayurveda can be used to prevent the diseases by understanding the disease pattern, its genetic basis and its DNA structure by carrying out integrated research with the modern biotechnology, genomics and proteomics methods and tools on medicinal and aromatic plants so that appropriate medicinal formulation can be evolved in the form of drugs to prevent the major diseases from the childhood or even from the mother's womb. Let me now analyze various possibilities of research and development in the field of herbal products.
Medicinal and aromatic plants
India has a valuable repository of medicinal and aromatic plants and rich biodiversity with hot spots in North East and Western Ghats. More than 45000 species of herbs most of them having medicinal properties exist in our country.
Medicinal and aromatic plants are emerging as the new opportunities of entrepreneurship for farmers and have become the resource for drugs, flavor and fragrances for pharma and aroma industries. The molecules responsible for aroma or drug activities are produced in these plants as secondary metabolites. Therefore, the understanding of metabolic pathways in these plants becomes a necessity to create useful genotypes. Such approaches which can lead to understanding of the complete network of metabolic pathways in the plant are referred as meta-bolomics. This approach enables increased production of desired molecule (drug) through nature's route (the plant). Desirable recombinants are obtained to produce the required nutrition, drug, trait (character) through plant system which eliminates synthetic way of production. This would facilitate organic mode of production or multiplication of important drugs. By using plant Genomics knowledge new types of plants with desired traits need to be available to serve the society without adverse effects on the environment.

'Plant Genomics' is the new emerging area of research, which deals with functional and structural definition of genes both in terms of their location in the genome and their expression for defining the precise regulation to control the whole metabolism. Thus this field opens up new avenues to modulate the gene expression in such a way that plants can be converted into proficient genotypes or varieties to be used as the bio-factories producing useful proteins, therapeutic molecules, nutritional compositions, and stress tolerant varieties to meet the current and futuristic requirement of the society in eco-environment friendly manner.
Genomic Research to reinforce traditional medicine
Unlike the western agricultural system, the Indian food chain had health as an important component in herbal medicine like turmeric, neem, pepper, garlic etc., but due to the scientific process of evolving allopathy medicine facing extreme competition in India, our medicinal plants have resurfaced from the western source through systematic scientific processing, packaging and marketing. The Plant genome researchers can study these plants and genomic signature which will enable us to patent these plants for medicinal use with adequate protection of intellectual property rights. You are already aware of the struggle India has to face on the neem patenting rights. At this juncture I like to compliment CSIR for placing Traditional Knowledge of Ayurveda as open source for the benefit of Mankind.

Now let me talk to you how a key plant molecule helps in combating cerebral malaria.
Combating Cerebral Malaria by Arte-misia annua
Arte-mi-si-nin is the key plant molecule, derived from the plant Arte-mi-sia annua which is presently the most effective alternative when the malarial infection takes place due to chloroquine resistant parasite Plasmodium falciparum. The demand of this drug is on a continuous rise and currently not even 50% of the drug demand world wide can be fulfilled mainly because of non-availability of raw materials (plant herb, the source of drug molecule). Around 500 million cases of malaria are reported each year in the world and result in loss of human lives. The manufacturers of arte-misinin derivatives (the drug) in India have been presently importing arte-misinin from international sources like China & Vietnam but the non-availability of raw materials has forced Indian industry to seriously think of cultivation of this crop indigenously for self reliance. But till recently no variety with high arte-mi-si-nin was available in India.
'CIM-Arogya' developed by CIMAP is a true product of molecular breeding leading to genetic enhancement of meta-bo-lite through pathway engineering. CIMAP technology package from cultivation to processing is providing competitive advantage to the industry to meet the global demand of artemisinin. The availability of the drug developed on the CIMAP technology will provide a powerful tool towards eradication of malaria in India and other third world countries through eco-scale greener means of plant derived bio-molecules. It is estimated that in the coming two years with the seed now produced for genotype CIM-Arogya, India will be able to assume leadership position in the world for production of artemisinin based anti-malarial drugs for malaria free world while enabling farmers to double their farm income.
Herbal Research for Soldier's health
When I was the Scientific Advisor to Defence Minister in DRDO, we launched a major R&D programme on "Herbs for Soldier's Health" and coded this activity as Programme "Charaka". Many new herbal extracts were developed into Nutraceutical products and herbal remedies for soldiers and the society. Some of these products include: Leh Berry juice as anti-oxidant beverage from Seabuckthorn (Hippophe Rhamnoides) for facilitating high altitude acclimatization; Aloe vera cream for prevention and treatment of cold injuries (frostbite), herbal adjuvant and immunomodulator from Amla and Shankpushpi. A composite Indian Herbal preparation (CIHP) was also developed as a basket of ten herbs and evaluated through a randomized double blind placebo controlled study on about 4000 soldiers at High Altitude. It was found to be effective in amelioration of High Altitude maladies.
Genomic Research on Ayurveda
Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology (IGIB), a CSIR Lab carried out an interesting research study to correlate the patterns of genomic profiles into three Prakritis and Trigunas. Very good correlation emerged from this study indicating the scientific rationale of Ayurveda. Pharmacogenomics or customized medicine for individuals concept recently being discussed in Modern Medicine already existed in Ayurveda as for the same type of ailments Ayurveda administers specific medicine optimizing dosage suitable to the Prakriti of the individual.
Demand for herbal products
Particularly, in the herbal area there are potential applications for developing multiple products for nutrition, prevention and cure of diseases. On the whole, India is stated to have 45,000 plant species. Out of these, about 3,500 species are of medicinal value. Harnessing this potential, according to experts, will not only boost our exports but also go a long way in the development of dry land agriculture in the country. The demand for medicinal plants is increasing everyday. The World Health Organization (WHO) has projected the global market for herbal products are estimated to increase to US$200 billion in 2008 and US$5 trillion in 2050.
Of the global herbal product market of US$ 80 billion, China has a share of around US $ 6 to 7 billion, whereas India?s share is not even US $ One billion. There are tremendous opportunities for growth in this area. India has similar potential for promoting floriculture and aquaculture in a big way. Knowledge-based value addition for these natural resources would mean exporting value-added products rather than merely the raw materials. Ancient knowledge is a unique resource of India for it has the treasure of a minimum of 5000 years of civilization. It is essential to leverage this wealth for national well being as well as to seek global presence for the nation. To achieve a considerable share in the world market, we need to place Ayurveda on a scientific pedestal. Rigorous research using phytochemistry, bio efficacy and safety evaluation, and adopting GLP and GMP in experimentation and manufacture of herbal drugs will be essential combined with adequate marketing strategies.
Ultimately, prevention is better than cure. Ayurveda?s basic foundation is consciousness. "Consciousness" primarily means moral conscience. Conscience is the light of the Soul that burns within the chambers of our psychological heart. It is as real as life is. It raises the voice in protest whenever anything is thought of or done contrary to the righteousness. Conscience is a form of truth that has been transferred through our genetic stock in the form of the knowledge of our own acts and feelings as right or wrong. When you keep conscience clear, righteousness will prevail upon you.
Righteousness in the heart
Where there is righteousness in the heart
There is beauty in the character.
When there is beauty in the character,
there is harmony in the home.
When there is harmony in the home.
There is an order in the nation.
When there is order in the nation,
There is peace in the world.
For achieving peace in the world the starting point is righteousness. Who will give righteousness in the heart, only three people can give, who are they? Father, mother and primary school teacher. Hence, for leading good quality and healthy life, again righteousness in the heart is essential. So, dear friends, all human sufferings start whether it is mind or body, when you deviate from righteousness. It is our duty to uphold righteousness in all our minds.
When you are all in the mission of removing the pain of people through Ayurveda, it is essential to work for creating enlightened citizens respecting their conscience, leading to disease free world.
Loka Samastha Sukhino Bhavantu - May All living beings in all the worlds be happy.

Let me conclude with a quote from Charaka Samhita :
"Health is known as Happiness, while disorder is Unhappiness"

My best wishes and May God bless you. 


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