Plants have a long history of use in the medical sector.
- Plants are the source of ~25% of all registered pharmaceuticals and are also used in a less refined form in a variety of traditional medicine therapies.
- Chinese medicine uses a wide-range of plant-derived extracts to treat a range of disease symptoms.
- A long history of botanical knowledge and extraction procedures provides a large knowledge-base on which this traditional medicine has been founded.
Personal Care Uses
Plants are also a source of bioactive compounds, which are used in the cosmeceuticals and personal-care industry. Plant bioactive compounds have a range of applications, from functional-food ingredients (carotenoids, fatty acids, phenolics, plant sterols, etc...) and nutraceuticals (DHA, EPA, ALA) to bioactive compounds with specific functionalities, such as anti-ageing.
Bioactive Compounds are the naturally occurring chemical compounds contained in, or derived from, a plant, animal or marine source, that exert the desired health/wellness benefit (e.g. omega-3 fatty acids in flax or fish oils and beta-glucans from oats and barley).
Cosmeceuticals represent the marriage of cosmetics and pharmaceuticals. Examples of products typically labelled as cosmeceuticals include anti-aging creams and moisturizers. Cosmeceuticals are cosmetic products with biologically active ingredients that have or is claimed to have medical or drug-like benefits.
A functional food is similar in appearance to, or may be, a conventional food that is consumed as part of a usual diet, and is demonstrated to have physiological benefits and/or reduce the risk of chronic disease beyond basic nutritional functions, i.e. they contain bioactive compound. Read more...
A nutraceutical is a product isolated or purified from foods that is generally sold in medicinal forms not usually associated with foods. A nutraceutical is demonstrated to have a physiological benefit or provide protection against chronic disease. Read more...
KTN's Plant Sector has developed a series of publications to highlight the economic benefit of research and development to the agriculture and food industry.