Regulation of Chinese medicines in Australia acknowledges traditional usage and is based on level of risk, with safer, lower risk medicines 'listed' by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), whilst higher risk medicines are 'registered' by the TGA.
Medicinal substances are approved for use in listed therapeutic products by the TGA once a detailed assessment of the safety is undertaken and, once approved, can be incorporated into new and traditional formulations.
The TGA has several thousand substances approved for use in listed medicines, however many substances that are used in Chinese medicine remain to be assessed for safety and are currently not permitted in listed therapeutic products.
Inclusion of new high-quality, research based ingredients promotes greater innovation and development of new therapeutics options, and also provides greater access to traditional formulations.
With the burden of chronic disease growing in Australia and globally, new therapeutic options for treatment are becoming increasingly important.
An industry partner program between NICM, Western Sydney University and Beijing Tong Ren Tang Chinese Medicine Corporation Ltd. is now underway to investigate safeties of possible new Chinese medicine ingredients and evidence to support use in Australia and promote the further research and development of therapeutic products.
The research team is headed by Associate Professor Chun Guang Li (CI), Mr Paul Archer, and Professor Alan Bensoussan.