March 2, 2021 at 6:15 pm

Science Cafe | Chemotyping Natural Medicines Using Spectroscopy and Machine Learning, March 24

Ohio University’s Science Café series features Dr. Peter Harrington discussing “Chemotyping Natural Medicines Using Spectroscopy and Machine Learning” on Wednesday, March 24, at 5 p.m.

Harrington is professor of Chemistry & Biochemistry at Ohio University.

Natural medicines and supplements are a growing market in the USA and globally. Examples include cannabis, black cohosh, cinnamon, and ginseng. The U.S. Department of Agriculture and the AOAC-International, an organization of analytical science experts, are interested in developing methods for evaluating the quality of these plant-based products.

Unlike conventional pharmaceuticals that may contain only a handful of ingredients, botanicals and their products, such as tinctures, oils, and extracts, may contain hundreds of chemical compounds. In addition, because plants are grown instead of synthesized like most drugs, their chemical composition may vary based on growing conditions, harvesting, and portions of the plants. In addition, natural medicines are susceptible to economic fraud, contamination, and adulteration.

One approach to characterizing botanical materials is by chemotyping, which provides a fingerprint of the chemical composition.

In his Science Cafe, Harrington will talk about how scientists develop rapid and accurate testing for maintaining the quality of the medicine and protecting the consumer.

2020-21 Science Cafe logo--with coffee cup encircled by planet rotation tracks and stars

The series is supported by the Ohio University Research Division and Ohio University Chapter of Sigma Xi. For more information visit the Science Cafe website.

Spring Science Café Schedule

Feb. 24: Karen Coschigano, Associate Professor, Biomedical Sciences and Guy Riefler, Professor, Civil Engineering, Wastewater:  A COVID-19 Early Warning System.” | Watch on YouTube.

March 17: Dustin Grooms, Associate Professor, Physical Therapy

March 24: Pete Harrington, Professor, Chemistry and Biochemistry, “Chemotyping Natural Medicines Using Spectroscopy and Machine Learning” | Watch on YouTube

Fall 2020 Science Cafe Schedule

Links to these virtual events will be posted several days before the event on the Science Cafe website and on the Ohio University Calendar.

Sept. 2: Athens City-County Health Department, “College with COVID:  One Community, One Mission.”Watch on YouTube.

Sept. 16: Rob Brannan, Professor of Applied Health Sciences and Wellness. | Watch on YouTube.

Oct. 5: Witmer Lab, (Larry Witmer, Professor of Biomedical Sciences and his lab). | Watch on YouTube.

Oct. 21: Paul Benedict, Director of Center for Entrepreneurship. | Watch on YouTube.

Nov. 16: Geoff Dabelko, Professor of Environmental Studies. | Watch on YouTube.

Nov. 18: Nathan Weyand, Assistant Professor, Biological Sciences, “Antibiotic Resistance and Protective Blood.”

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