The School of Pharmacy and Technology Management of the Mumbai-based NMIMS University have received a research grant of Rs 27.46 lakh from the National Medicinal Plants Board (NMPB) to conduct research on ayurvedic formulations.

With the grant, the institution will conduct research on isolation, characterization and standardization of phytoconstituents from herbal extracts used in ayurvedic formulations by using HPLC and HPTLC methods. The study will be conducted in a period of three years and the results will be published in scientific magazines for further industrial use, according to Dr R S Gaud, dean, School of Pharmacy and Technology Management, NMIMS University.

"There is an urgent need for supporting our traditional medicine system with modern scientific database, especially when the ayurvedic products are disdained by the western countries. The central government has recognised this need and our effort is to utilise the government support to bring the scientific efforts to practicality," said Dr Gaud.

The research will be conducted on two plants, Amla (Emblica offcinalis) and Mamijava (Enicostemma littorale), informed Dr Nancy Pandita, professor and head, Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry in the institution, who has submitted the proposal. "We will be isolating three to four compounds from Amla, which has anti-oxidant properties, and validate to authentify the medicinal property," said Dr Pandita.

The institution is currently carrying out three projects including the latest study granted by the NMPB, with the support of various central government organisations. A study on 'in silico design, synthesis and evaluation of chalcone analogues as vascular endothelial growth factor receptor (vegfr) inhibitors for tumour anti angiogenesis activity' is conducted with the support of Department of Biotechnology. Apart from the latest study, the institution has also received grants from the NMPB for 'scientific documentation (digitization) of selected Indian medicinal plants used for anti-diabetic activity'.

"The researches conducted by the institutions and universities are remaining unattended by the industry because of the lack of interest from the researchers part. We want to make it sure that the money spent by the nation in such research activities should not be wasted and hence the research should be useful for both the students and the industry," said Dr Gaud.

The institution is also offering industrial consultancy for companies like Vedic Life Sciences Pvt Ltd, Shogun Organics Ltd and Aventis Pharma Ltd in selected projects, it is learnt.