USP Establishes Advisory Panel on Botanicals

November 27, 2002
Rockville, Maryland --- The United States Pharmacopeia (USP) is pleased to announce that it has established an advisory panel on botanicals. The new USP Botanical Advisory Panel will advise USP's Dietary Supplements-Botanicals Expert Committee on the development of information on botanicals pertaining to historical use, botanical identification, global regulatory status, good agricultural practices, and handling that will supplement the standards in the United States Pharmacopeia and National Formulary (USP-NF). In addition, the panel will explore the feasibility of developing Authentic Plant Reference Materials (APRM).

"With the formation of the advisory panel, we will be able to obtain and disseminate information on how to improve the quality of botanicals," said David B. Roll, director of dietary supplements at USP. "Historically, USP has created standards for botanical products, however, we have never looked at factors that favor optimal growth, handling, and storage of botanicals."

Comprising 12 members from academia, government, and industry, the panel is headed by William F. Popin, the director of research and development and quality for Young Living Essential Oils. He also is a member of USP's Dietary Supplement Botanicals Expert Committee. The committee develops monographs and establishes standards for botanical dietary supplements. Other members of the panel include: Simon Mills, professor of University of Exeter (Devon, England); Rudolf Bauer, professor at the Institut fuer Pharmakognosie (Graz, Austria); Mark Blumenthal, executive director at the American Botanical Council; Amala Raman, senior postgraduate tutor, King's College (London, England); Roy Upton, executive director, American Herbal Pharmacopoeia; John Cardellina, vice president, Council for Responsible Nutrition; James Miller, curator and head, Applied Research Department, Missouri Botanical Garden; Greg Pennyroyal, president, Growing Medicine Inc.; Ezio Bomabardelli, Indena S.p.A. (Milan, Italy); Kathy Sharpless, Analytical Chemistry Division, NIST; and Edward Fletcher, Strategic Sourcing Inc. Gabriel Giancaspro is USP staff liaison to the panel, which will report to USP's Botanicals Expert Committee chaired by Paul Schiff.

At the first meeting of the panel held in November, the panel agreed to focus its efforts on valerian, ginger, black cohosh, and saw palmetto, which also have USP monographs. The panel also plans to create additional information chapters in the USP-NF.

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USP is a non-government organization that promotes the public health by establishing state-of-the-art standards to ensure the quality of medicines and other health care technologies. These standards are developed by a unique process of public involvement and are recognized worldwide. In addition, USP has public health programs that focus on promoting optimal health care, including the Dietary Supplement Verification Program (DSVP), Health Care Information, and Patient Safety. USP is a not-for-profit organization that achieves its goals through the contributions of volunteers representing pharmacy, medicine, and other health care professions, as well as science, academia, government, the pharmaceutical industry, and consumer organizations. For more information, visit


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