NUI Galway to host the inaugural Global Alliance of Confucius Institutes of Chinese Medicine

Pictured at the ceremony at NUI Galway (front row) NUI Galway President Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh and Professor Chun CHENG, Chair of University Administrative Council, Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine. Back row, l-r: Zhiguang SUN, Vice President, Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine; Jianfei MA, Director General, Center for Language Education and Cooperation; Cllr. Niall McNelis, former Galway Mayor; Xuejun TIAN, Chinese Vice Minister for Education; Xiaoyong YUE, Ambassador of China to Ireland; Timothy O’Brien, NUI Galway Director of the Confucius Institute; Professor Sanbing Shen, REMEDI, NUI Galway. Photo: Aengus McMahon
Sep 21 2020 Posted: 10:03 IST

Online event to discuss research on the future of regenerative medicine

NUI Galway is today hosting an online forum for the inaugural meeting of 17 Confucius Institutes around the world which are dedicated to the study of Chinese Medicine.

The newly established Global Alliance of Confucius Institutes of Chinese Medicine (GACICM) is for the first time bringing together academics, healthcare specialists and researchers from 17 institutes in 13 countries.

The Alliance is being led by the Confucius Institute of Chinese and Regenerative Medicine at NUI Galway, which was established in 2019, with a distinct focus on researching the potential benefits of Chinese herbal products in developing new therapies.

Professor Timothy O’Brien, Dean of NUI Galway’s College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, Director of the Confucius Institute at the University, said: “The Global Alliance of Confucius Institutes for Chinese Medicine is a unique opportunity – for NUI Galway, for our patients, for science and for research and discovery with colleagues across the globe.

“It opens doors to study potential therapies for conditions for which we currently don’t have good treatments. It is phenomenally exciting to be leading an ambitious team to see if we can discover new drugs from herbal products used in Chinese Medicine and whether they can be used in the treatment of conditions of unmet medical need, for which we have stem cell models at our flagship lab in NUI Galway.”

“Researchers at NUI Galway have been paving the way in regenerative medicine research for over 16 years. Now we are charting a new and ambitious path, with the goal of analysing Chinese Medicine herbal products in a bid to discover molecules which have regenerative capabilities.”

In advance of attending the meeting, NUI Galway President Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh said: “We are delighted to virtually host the inaugural Global Alliance of Confucius Institutes of Chinese Medicine. We are honoured to be joined by esteemed colleagues from China, Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine and representatives from across the globe. NUI Galway has committed itself to fostering such partnerships.

“As set out in our strategy, Shared Vision, Shaped by Values, we are here for the public good. We look forward to research in Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Therapy leading to the development of innovative treatments to improve healthcare for all.” 

NUI Galway’s Confucius Institute involves a partnership between clinicians and scientists at the University’s Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI), where Professor O’Brien is Director, and the Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine.

NUI Galway’s partnership with Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine is the only link-up of its kind focusing on the interface between Chinese and Regenerative Medicine. It also creates an international link between research teams and the Centre for Cell Manufacturing Ireland in NUI Galway and the only facility in Ireland licensed to produce Mesenchymal Stem Cells for human administration in regulated clinical trials.

The online meeting is being chaired by Prof O’Brien. Among those attending will be Mr Lingshan Zhao, the Vice President and Secretary-General of Chinese International Education Foundation; representatives from Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine including Professor Zhiguang Sun, Vice President International; Confucius Institute Directors and University Presidents from the 17 institutes including Ireland, UK, Australia, Japan, Hungary, Portugal, Korea, Thailand, South Africa, USA, Cuba, Brazil and Slovakia.


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