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The role of natural products for health maintenance and disease prevention is becoming increasingly important globally, while promoting the urgent need of sustainable innovation. Changing climate and geopolitical events present new challenges and opportunities that require agile, informed and visionary scientific approaches.  


This year in Ireland, GA2023 presents the best of global research in diverse areas that are well established, as well as those areas which are rapidly emerging as hot topics. The themes of the congress, to name but a few,  draw from global expertise, which will discuss the phytochemistry of the world’s diverse ecosystems from rainforests to polar regions to boglands; will present cutting edge research on the promising role of fungal derived psychedelic drugs in the treatment of ‘treatment resistant depression’; will present the successful journey of a multi-disciplinary, multi-institutional natural products drug discovery research program elaborating novel anticancer compounds from a range of organisms; will present AI and metabolomic approaches for innovation and deconvolution within the field of natural products; will present advances in methodology in the areas of analysis and formulation.  


In addition, we will come together to discuss these developments and challenges from the perspective of sustainability, while considering the impact of the global regulatory landscape on the progression of plant derived extracts, molecules and foods to the clinic and to international markets. 


This event will have a special focus on ‘Unlocking Nature’s Pharmacy for a Sustainable Future’, offering a platform for exchange of international science to stimulate debate, to create collaborations and to inform policy. We aim to expand global private-public network with positive engagement with natural capital. 


We also offer our attendees networking opportunities, as well as the chance to present their work in poster presentations and liaise with exhibitors on latest technology in this arena.  

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Themes, keynote speakers and talks’ topic



Natural products chemistry. Challenges and opportunities in the natural products and medicines supply

Prof. A. Douglas Kinghorn

Discovery of Anticancer Agents of Diverse Natural Origin



Phytochemistry, biological and pharmacological activities of natural products

Prof. Clara Bik-San Lau

Exploration of beneficial herb-drug combinations – will this advance the development and application of herbal medicines? 


Dr Aedin Cassidy

Dietary flavonoids and cardiometabolic health 


Prof. Lyndy McGaw       

African plants: valuable sources of phytogenic alternatives to antibiotic feed additives in poultry



Metabolomics, molecular networking, molecular modelling, AI

Dr Young Hae Choi         

NMR chemical profiling medicinal plants with new perspectives: how to do, what to expect and where to apply



Ethnobotany, ethnopharmacology and traditional medicine

Prof. John Thor Arnason             

New directions in Ethnobotany and Ethnopharmacology of Turtle Island (North and Central America) 



Cannabis research

Dr Jürg Gertsch

Cannabis and the endocannabinoid system: Translating basic research into clinical trials



Psychedelic drugs. A revival for mental health

Dr David Erritzoe            

Psychedelics in mental health – Therapeutic potential and possible brain mechanisms




Prof. Aiping Lyu

A lymphatic route for oral polysaccharide to trigger immune responses



Analytical methods, new developments, new applications

Dr Emerson Queiroz

From the discovery of bioactive natural products to the development of innovative strategies for their chemo-diversification and generation of potential new leads

Prof. Wirginia Kukula-Koch        

Centrifugal Partition Chromatography (CPC) – principles and applications in the recovery of natural products of pharmacological significance


Regulatory Affairs – Herbal medicine, novel foods, medical devices, cosmetics and emerging therapies

Prof. Ioanna Chinou      

Deep dive into the world of medicinal plants - “The Chamber of secrets has been opened, enemies of HERBS… beware”


Delivery and formulations

Prof. Lea Ann Dailey      

Pharmacokinetic considerations for inhaled natural product mixtures to treat lung infections



Dr Una FitzGerald           

The Rise of Lab Greening as a Climate Action



Regulatory Affair Panel Session

Monday Afternoon, 03rd July 2023

A regulatory insight on challenges and opportunities in the development of plant-based products to support human health. This event will invite regulatory experts to discuss regulations and quality spanning across herbal medicine, food supplements, medical devices, cosmetics, cannabis, psychedelic drugs and essential oils. We will be engaging in laws, challenges and opportunities through case studies presented by experts, including from the HMPC, followed by the opportunity to participate to a Q&A panel to address regulatory roadmaps across herbal medicine, food, new and emerging therapies and medical devices.  



Sustainability Panel Session

Tuesday morning, 4th July 2023

What is sustainability? Why has it become so relevant to our way of living and working? In this session, we bring together a systemic view of sustainability applied to the use of natural products in research, development and commercialisation of plant-base products across sectors. The event aims to inform and contribute to innovative approaches to support bioeconomy, circular economy and the sustainable development goals. It will bring together a broad stakeholders’ prospective on different approaches towards sustainability, from green lab and green chemistry, to biodiversity, bioeconomy and circular economy. Case studies and examples will be presented by speakers from academia, industry and government, followed by a Q&A panel to address challenges and opportunities to lead a positive impact working with natural resources.


Current Topics in Botanical Safety (run by the Botanical Safety Consortium)

Wednesday afternoon, 5th July 2023

The growing popularity and interest in botanical products on a global scale has led to an increased focus on appropriate safety evaluation of these complex materials. These include aspects related to the characterization and identification of the material, challenges within the regulatory space, and the approaches and methods that can be effectively used to evaluate safety.  Various tools, including new approach methodologies (NAMs) that can help screen for potential toxicity, are being explored and adapted for botanicals.  


In addition, strategies are being developed to connect the scientific advances in analytical chemistry, substance characterization, toxicology, pharmacognosy, and regulatory science, with the aim of improving overall botanical safety.  This session will highlight recent and ongoing developments and challenges related to safety evaluation of botanicals, including updates from the Botanical Safety Consortium.   

Draft Programme

A copy of the draft programme is available to download here

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