There is a renewed interest in medicinal plants all over the world. The World Health Organization

    
There is a renewed interest in medicinal plants all over the world. The
World Health Organization (WHO) now has a list including 150 plants that
its experts consider therapeutic. And in Brazil right now there is a boom
of natural medicine. At least 5 million Brazilians use homeopathy as their
first choice for treatment, creating an annual half a billion dollar market.  While in the US there are no more than 3,000 homeopathic doctors, in
Brazil there are 13,000 of them. In 1982 there were a mere 300. No other
country with the exception of India has more homeopaths. And, in the last
20 years, the number of homeopathic pharmacies has skyrocketed from 10
to 1600. Two thousand pharmacists produce 3,000 medicinal formulas using
minerals, animals, and most of all plants. There are also 250 dentists
and 100 veterinarians specialized in homeopathy.  Modern pharmacology does not ignore the therapeutic effects of plants.
Forty percent of the time industrialized medicines use plants as their
active ingredient, although generally in a synthesized more concentrated
formula. The active ingredient in aspirin, for example, was originally
found in the bark of willow trees.  According to the American publication The Nutrition Business Journal,
60% of Yankee physicians have on occasion referred a patient to alternative
treatments, including naturopathy, herbalism, and homeopathy. In the U.S.,
the market for herbal supplements grossed over $700 million in 1995 and
it is expected that this amount will grow to $1.6 by the year 2000.  Botanists believe that from 35,000 to 70,000 plant species are used
throughout the world as medicine, most of them growing in tropical forests.
And in the U.S. there are at least 120 widely used prescription drugs made
from 95 species of plants, 39 of which are originally from the rainforest.  Roughly 1/4 of all pharmaceutical products in the market today use substances
from the rainforest. Among widely used products based on plants we have
aspirin, morphine, and codeine. There is also digitalis, used as a heart
medicine; curare, as a muscle relaxant; and colchicin, prescribed as an
anti-inflammatory.   IN THE BEGINNING
Five hundred years ago, 14% of the earth's surface was covered by rainforest.
Since then, an area of 3.5 million square miles of these forests, roughly
equivalent to the size of the United States, has been destroyed. The rainforest
today occupies only 6% of the earth. As a consequence of this destruction
it is estimated that 1.5 million life form species were lost and 50,000
more continue to be destroyed every year. All this was done and continues
to be done in the name of progress and allegedly for economic reasons,
even though studies have shown, for example, that 2.4 acres of land in
the Amazon can produce $1,000 of annual income when clear cut, but generate
$6,800 a year when left intact.  Despite all the destruction, it is believed that the rainforests still
preserve 30 million different species, roughly half of all life forms on
earth and 2/3 of all plants. This without mentioning the importance of
these forests to the earth's weather and atmosphere. A third of the world's
tropical forests are in Brazilian territory and, as for the Amazon forest,
two thirds of it are in Brazil. The country still boasts the Pantanal (the
world's largest wetland), the Cerrado (the world's most biologically diverse
Savannah), and the Mata Atlântica, an even richer life laboratory
than the Amazon, despite its much smaller size.  At the time of Brazil's discovery, the Mata Atlântica, the strip
of luscious forest covering the entire Brazilian coast, occupied an area
equivalent to 12% of today's national territory. In its widest area the
strip was as large as 300 miles. Today this treasure has been reduced to
10% of its original size. From 1985 to 1990 alone 1.2 billion trees were
cut. Its destruction is a textbook case of how to dilapidate an inestimable
patrimony.  The devastation accompanied the several cycles of the Brazilian economy,
all of them much more interested in immediate profit instead of a long-term
planned investment. First was the brazil wood cycle that would cut this
valuable tree destroying in the process 6,000 sq. km of the forest. In
the XVIII century, the discovery of gold and precious stones gave the jungle
a respite while 2,000 tons of gold were dug up. During the sugar cane and
coffee cycles as well as the cocoa tree plantation cycle in the state of
Bahia, huge areas of jungle would be burned down to make room for these
crops. From 1.5 million sq. km 500 years ago, the Mata Atlântica
today is just a sad shadow of its previous self, with just 95,000 sq. km
left.  Despite all the recent rhetoric in Brazil about preserving the green,
Brazilians were and still are too eager to cut trees. Not before the 80s
did the first green groups start to voice their outrage and the theme became
a national issue. In Brazil, the jungle and backwardness have always been
equated. Caipira and caipora, two words to designate a rustic
man without culture have their roots in Tupi terms that referred to inhabitants
of the forest.

    There is a renewed interest in medicinal plants all over the world. The
    World Health Organization (WHO) now has a list including 150 plants that
    its experts consider therapeutic. And in Brazil right now there is a boom
    of natural medicine. At least 5 million Brazilians use homeopathy as their
    first choice for treatment, creating an annual half a billion dollar market.

    While in the US there are no more than 3,000 homeopathic doctors, in
    Brazil there are 13,000 of them. In 1982 there were a mere 300. No other
    country with the exception of India has more homeopaths. And, in the last
    20 years, the number of homeopathic pharmacies has skyrocketed from 10
    to 1600. Two thousand pharmacists produce 3,000 medicinal formulas using
    minerals, animals, and most of all plants. There are also 250 dentists
    and 100 veterinarians specialized in homeopathy.

    Modern pharmacology does not ignore the therapeutic effects of plants.
    Forty percent of the time industrialized medicines use plants as their
    active ingredient, although generally in a synthesized more concentrated
    formula. The active ingredient in aspirin, for example, was originally
    found in the bark of willow trees.

    According to the American publication The Nutrition Business Journal,
    60% of Yankee physicians have on occasion referred a patient to alternative
    treatments, including naturopathy, herbalism, and homeopathy. In the U.S.,
    the market for herbal supplements grossed over $700 million in 1995 and
    it is expected that this amount will grow to $1.6 by the year 2000.

    Botanists believe that from 35,000 to 70,000 plant species are used
    throughout the world as medicine, most of them growing in tropical forests.
    And in the U.S. there are at least 120 widely used prescription drugs made
    from 95 species of plants, 39 of which are originally from the rainforest.

    Roughly 1/4 of all pharmaceutical products in the market today use substances
    from the rainforest. Among widely used products based on plants we have
    aspirin, morphine, and codeine. There is also digitalis, used as a heart
    medicine; curare, as a muscle relaxant; and colchicin, prescribed as an
    anti-inflammatory.

     IN THE BEGINNING
    Five hundred years ago, 14% of the earth’s surface was covered by rainforest.
    Since then, an area of 3.5 million square miles of these forests, roughly
    equivalent to the size of the United States, has been destroyed. The rainforest
    today occupies only 6% of the earth. As a consequence of this destruction
    it is estimated that 1.5 million life form species were lost and 50,000
    more continue to be destroyed every year. All this was done and continues
    to be done in the name of progress and allegedly for economic reasons,
    even though studies have shown, for example, that 2.4 acres of land in
    the Amazon can produce $1,000 of annual income when clear cut, but generate
    $6,800 a year when left intact.

    Despite all the destruction, it is believed that the rainforests still
    preserve 30 million different species, roughly half of all life forms on
    earth and 2/3 of all plants. This without mentioning the importance of
    these forests to the earth’s weather and atmosphere. A third of the world’s
    tropical forests are in Brazilian territory and, as for the Amazon forest,
    two thirds of it are in Brazil. The country still boasts the Pantanal (the
    world’s largest wetland), the Cerrado (the world’s most biologically diverse
    Savannah), and the Mata Atlântica, an even richer life laboratory
    than the Amazon, despite its much smaller size.

    At the time of Brazil’s discovery, the Mata Atlântica, the strip
    of luscious forest covering the entire Brazilian coast, occupied an area
    equivalent to 12% of today’s national territory. In its widest area the
    strip was as large as 300 miles. Today this treasure has been reduced to
    10% of its original size. From 1985 to 1990 alone 1.2 billion trees were
    cut. Its destruction is a textbook case of how to dilapidate an inestimable
    patrimony.

    The devastation accompanied the several cycles of the Brazilian economy,
    all of them much more interested in immediate profit instead of a long-term
    planned investment. First was the brazil wood cycle that would cut this
    valuable tree destroying in the process 6,000 sq. km of the forest. In
    the XVIII century, the discovery of gold and precious stones gave the jungle
    a respite while 2,000 tons of gold were dug up. During the sugar cane and
    coffee cycles as well as the cocoa tree plantation cycle in the state of
    Bahia, huge areas of jungle would be burned down to make room for these
    crops. From 1.5 million sq. km 500 years ago, the Mata Atlântica
    today is just a sad shadow of its previous self, with just 95,000 sq. km
    left.

    Despite all the recent rhetoric in Brazil about preserving the green,
    Brazilians were and still are too eager to cut trees. Not before the 80s
    did the first green groups start to voice their outrage and the theme became
    a national issue. In Brazil, the jungle and backwardness have always been
    equated. Caipira and caipora, two words to designate a rustic
    man without culture have their roots in Tupi terms that referred to inhabitants
    of the forest.

    “The Amazon’s chemiodiversity is much bigger than the forest’s visible
    part,” says Massuo Kato from Universidade de São Paulo’s (USP) Chemistry
    Institute. Kato has worked in the development of a new classification for
    the Amazon’s vegetables based on the chemistry of its fruits. This should
    help to find what is the best time for picking the fruit as well as indicate
    which part of it has more active elements.

    There are tens of millions of species in the world, according to scientists
    speculations, even though they were able to describe less than 1.5 million
    up to now, half of them living in rainforests. Some scientists believe
    that that proportion would grow to 90% in favor of the tropical forest
    if a complete tally of all species was ever accomplished. Brazil is home
    to the greatest number of insects species, as well as of terrestrial vertebrates,
    amphibians, primates, freshwater fish, and flowering plants. With a handful
    of other countries, it is classified by scientists as a megadiversity land.
     

     

    GET OFF OUR JUNGLE
    Most of all, the military are today in the forefront of a movement to keep
    foreigners out of the Brazilian jungle. Some of them are even ready to
    go to war, literally, in defense of the rainforest against what they call
    the “international cupidity”.

    “We can start a guerrilla war over there as the Vietnamese have done,”
    said reformed colonel Gélio Augusto Fregapani at the end of last
    year in Rio, during a forum called “Amazon – Threat of Territorial Losses,
    Occupation, and Development,” which was part of the Third National Encounter
    on Strategic Studies, a meeting organized by the Escola Superior de Guerra
    ( Higher School of War).

    It was a rare instance of the right and left putting aside their differences
    to join efforts against a common enemy. Former Army minister Leônidas
    Pires Gonçalves was there as well as Roraima’s governor Neudo Campos,
    and historian Lygia Garner, who teaches at Southeast Texas University.

    The assembly’s indignation was palpable when lieutenant-colonel, Marcus
    Vinicius Belfort Teixeira, who at 43 is considered one of the youngest
    most active military voices today, denounced the U.S. effort to internationalize
    the Amazon. And the mood was belligerent when the Air Force officer told
    about a sticker circulating on car windows in London that say: “Fight for
    the forest. Burn a Brazilian.”

    According to Belfort, the Brazilian government is demarcating indigenous
    areas on the frontier with other South American countries—something he
    considers extremely dangerous to national security—succumbing to international
    pressure mainly from the United States and Germany. Americans and Germans,
    according to Teixeira and other military personnel, are interested in the
    mineral-rich area’s subsoil.
     

     

    AMERICA’S 
    WONDER DRUGS

    Coca

    A sacred plant used as food and folk medicine in the Andes for a variety
    of purposes including an anesthetic and calcium supplement. Coca (Erythroxylum
    coca) means simply tree in the Aymara dialect. It was in 1860 that German
    chemist Carl Köler isolated the cocaine and found its virtues as a
    local anesthetic. After that, coca and cocaine started to be used for a
    variety of ailments and were added to several tonics including Coca-Cola.
    Curare

    A poisonous concoction with several plants whose formula was kept a
    secret for centuries. Alexander von Humboldt was the first European to
    witness and describe the way the ingredients were put together, in 1800.
    But curare would start being used as an anesthetic only in 1943, four years
    after its active ingredient, the d-tubocurarine was isolated.
    Quinine

    Used as an infusion by the Amazon natives in the treatment of fever.
    Derived from the cinchona tree (Cinchona officinalis) it was used
    in the 20s in the US for the treatment of malaria. Known as Indian fever
    bark the product was used in Europe since the early 1500s. One century
    later its name had been changed to Jesuit fever bark. The demand for the
    cinchona almost made it extinct. By smuggling it from South America to
    Java, in 1865, Englishman Charles Ledger saved the plant. Sixty years later,
    more than 95% of the world’s quinine was coming from Java.
     

    A Natural 
    First-Aid Kit
    Ayahuasca or caapi or santo daime or jagupe (Banisteria caapi)—Stimulant
    of the senses, with claims to cure cancer. Patented by International Plant
    Medicine Corporation.

    Bibiri or beberu (Ocotea radioei)— Used as contraceptive
    and as a HIV and small tumors inhibitor.

    Cabacinha (Luffa operculata)—Mixed with cachaça
    (sugar-cane hard liquor) it is used against sinusitis and as a nasal
    decongestant. As an unguent it is applied on tumors.

    Erva botão (Eclipta prostata)—An antidote to snake
    bites.

    Erva de jabuti or aperta-ruão (Leandra lacunosa)—Good
    against diabetes.

    Guaraná (Paulinia cupania)— Source of caffeine,
    it fights fatigue. Used in soft drinks.

    Hortelã roxo—Used as solution for ear pain.

    Jaborandi (Pilocarpus jaborandi)—Taken as a tea
    as a diuretic or to induce sweat. Also used in treatment of diabetes, asthma,
    arthritis, and baldness.

    Japana (Eupatoriu ayapana)—Leaves are rubbed on insects
    bites.

    Muirapuama (Ptychopetalum olacoides)- It is reputed
    to be an aphrodisiac. Also used for arthritis and as a stimulant.

    Oriza—Tea is taken for heart ailments

    Pau d’Arco (Tabebuia impetiginosa) A medicine for candida,
    athletes foot and also used as a natural anti-biotic. It has also been
    used against cancer.

    Picão (Bidens Pilosa)—For the treatment of malaria
    and hepatitis

    Puxuri or puxiri or pixurim (Licaria Puchurymajor)—A preventive
    medicine against baby colic.

    Quebra-pedra (Parietaria officinalis)—For kidney stones
    and urinary tract relief. Patented by Fox Medical Center for the treatment
    of hepatitis B.

    Saracura-mirá—A cure-all elixir. Used to treat all kinds
    of pain and also malaria

    Sucuuba (Himathantus Sucuba)—Mosquito repellent. It can
    be used in candles.

    Suma or piriguara or paraguaia (Achietea salutaris)— Called
    South American Ginseng. Used as tonic and to relieve the symptoms of menopause.
     

    Want to know more? 
    Try these places:
    By
    Alessandra Dalevi

    Salegen is a new medicine sold in tablet form used in the treatment
    of xerostoma, a disease also known as dry mouth syndrome in which the person
    is not able to produce saliva. Its active ingredient is pilocarpine, a
    substance extracted from jaborandi, a plant native to Northeastern
    Brazil. The Brazilian Indians have known about jaborandi’s therapeutic
    properties for generations. The American lab that developed the new drug
    could have saved itself a lot of research and aggravation by just knowing
    what jaborandi means: in Tupi-Guarani dialect the word means “slobber-mouth
    plant” and the shrub-like tree has been used since immemorial times by
    the natives for that: inducing salivation.

    Pilocarpus jaborandi is an integral part of Brazilian folk medicine.
    Caboclos (non-Indian jungle residents) and Indians prepare a tea
    with its leaves and drink it as a diuretic or to induce sweat. Diabetics
    and asthma sufferers use it as expectorant and stimulant via an infusion
    made with the powdered leaves. Arthritis and pleurisy—a lung inflammation—have
    also been treated with jaborandi. And when applied to the scalp,
    a potion made with the leaves is believed to prevent baldness. Merck Laboratory
    has marketed a product made from jaborandi called Policarpina, which
    is used in the treatment of glaucoma.

    All in all, the little Amazon tree is nature’s miracle drug like hundreds
    of others whose secrets many times are only known by shamans who have been
    passing this oral knowledge from generation to generation. When the first
    Europeans landed in the Americas, the indigenous peoples from the region,
    utilizing plants and other natural substances had already developed a sophisticated
    medical system that included diagnosis and treatment of all kinds of diseases.

    With the skyrocketing prices of developing new drugs and a seeming exhaustion
    of the traditional allopathic medicine, more and more laboratories around
    the world are showing interest in this wealth of folk medicine knowledge.
    The costs of researching the medicinal powers of plants are far less than
    trying to produce synthetic drugs. Besides, the sheer number of different
    chemicals that exist in the Amazon, for example, dwarfs the capacity that
    scientist have of creating new products

    Brazilians have been noticing foreigners’ covetous eyes on their natural
    and floral wealth and many people think the country is being robbed by
    unscrupulous biopirates, be it under the disguise of missionary or scientific
    expeditions, be it through multinationals claiming a stake in this wealth
    often times considered mankind’s public domain patrimony. Many companies
    have also used the argument that Brazil has no right to demand compensation
    and royalties for its resources when the country is an infamous pirate
    itself producing medicines patented overseas without paying any royalties
    to its creators. This problem, however, has been addressed recently by
    the Fernando Henrique Cardoso administration, which has passed a law recognizing
    foreign patents for several products including pharmaceutical ones.

    Among Brazilian herbal products widely used in the country, santo
    daime (Vine Banisteriopsis) and quebra-pedra (Parietaria
    officinalis) have been patented in the U.S.. The first substance, extracted
    from a vine, and also known as jagupe and ayahuasca, has
    hallucinogenic properties and is used in connection with some Indian religious
    rituals and some sects. The International Plant Medicine Corporation got
    its patent. The quebra-pedra (stone breaker, literally), also known
    as fura-paredes (walls piercer, literally) is prepared as an infusion
    for kidney ailments. In the U.S., it became a medicine for hepatitis. In
    Japan, an Amazon plant called muirapuama is being sold as a cure
    for impotency and as an aphrodisiac.

    In Canada, Biolink, a small and new company has patented rupununine,
    a substance extracted from the seeds of bibiri (Octotea radioei),
    an Amazon plant. Roraima’s Wapixana Indians use the substance as a contraceptive.
    The Canadian lab hopes to develop a product that will fight tumors and
    AIDS. Biolink also wants to patent cumaniol, a substance extracted from
    a poison made from wild manioc, that is used to catch fishes in the Amazon.
    The new product, according to the Canadian company, might be used to stop
    the heart during some delicate surgeries.

    Another herb abundant in Brazil has become a worldwide phenomenon being
    touted as the natural Prozac. It is the Hypericum perforatum, better
    known in Brazil as jasim, erva-de-são-joão,
    or hipericão. In Germany, the product, which is taken as
    a tea or in the form of tablets, is being prescribed by doctors 25 times
    more than Prozac. German doctors just last year wrote 3 million prescriptions
    for the product. The craze is also starting to catch up in the U.S.. In
    Brazil, the herb is being commercialized under the name Extrato de Jasim
    or Hipérico. A study published in the United States shows that only
    2.4% of depressive patients treated with Hypericum presented side
    effects, while side effects are common for more than 30% of those taking
    Prozac.



    SPECIES COLLECTION



    It is estimated that the Third World countries with rainforests from which
    natural resources and indigenous knowledge are being taken are denied $5.4
    billion in royalties every year. How much are the rainforests worth? Hard
    to say. A frequently mentioned estimate puts is at $43 billion just for
    medicines made from plants . This amount was proposed by P. P. Principe
    in the book The Economic Significance of Plants and Their Constituents
    as Drugs published in 1989. As for the profits that are returned to
    the natives, Darrell Posey, director of the Programme for Traditional Resource
    Rights at the Oxford Centre for the Environment in Great Britain and researcher
    for the Brazilian National Council for Science and Technology at the Goeldi
    Museum in Belém, state of Pará, in Brazil, estimates them
    at less than 0.001 percent.

    While Brazil and many other Third World countries are still discussing
    how to implement the decisions of Rio’s 1992 Earth Summit, with the U.S.
    dragging its feet on ratifying those documents, the United States has become
    a hotbed for biopiracy. More than 200 companies have been established here
    to collect foreign material, an activity that is elegantly called bioprospection,
    but others prefer to call biopiracy. These prospectors or pirates, who
    explore everything from plants to human genes, have become a $60-million-a-year
    industry in the U.S..

    According to Luiz Frederico Arruda, a professor at Universidade de Manaus,
    Amazonas state capital, at least 20,000 plant samples are taken from the
    Amazon every year. “Biopiracy has two degrees,” said professor Laymert
    Garcia from Unicamp (Universidade de Campinas), in the state of São
    Paulo, in an interview with the weekly news magazine Veja. “In the
    first one, taking advantage of a lack of legislation, they patent substances
    from the forests, without due retribution as envisioned by international
    treaties. In the second, they get the patent for something that is being
    used freely. While the patent has legal value only in the country in which
    it was registered, it is normal that the rest of the world ends up accepting
    it.”

    Brazilian Celso Fiorillo, a doctor in environment and author of Manual
    do Direito Ambiental (Manual of Environmental Law) has denounced the
    fact that Brazilian Indians are being used as guinea pigs and that the
    country’s flora and fauna are being exploited by multinationals. In an
    interview with the daily newspaper O Estado de São Paulo,
    Fiorillo stated: “Groups that are economically stronger and possess high
    technology enter the Amazon region in many different ways in search of
    natural products. Afterwards, they industrialize them and resell them to
    the Third World Country with infinitely superior prices.” He calls the
    Genoma Project undertaken by the G7, the world’s seven richest capitalist
    countries, a grave and dangerous sin because “it implies patenting life.”

    Fiorillo calls biopiracy a serious breach of the country’s sovereignty.
    “Globalization is the modern name for colonialism. There is a direct connection
    between this neoliberal policy and the seizing of our environment’s wealth
    by developed countries.” He also criticizes the Brazilian government for
    paying lip service in defense of the Amazon to appease the press while
    at same time cutting the staff in charge of guarding the forest. “The number
    of public servants caring for the Amazon is ridiculous,” he says. “The
    Ministry of the Environment and the Legal Amazon have been treated as mere
    perfumery, although it is essential to maintain the Amazon’s sovereignty
    and environment.” 



    SUBTLE PIRACY



    Biopiracy can be very sophisticated and hardly noticeable. Here is a classic
    example. In 1988, the American magazine National Geographic published
    an article about the medicinal uses of the tiki uba, a plant
    used by the Amazon Urueu-Wau-Wau Indians. The people from Merck Pharmaceutical
    read the story, studied the substance and started to develop a product
    based on their “discovery”. No consideration or reward has been given to
    the Urueu-Wau-Waus, who are on the brink of extinction.

    Sérgio Ferreira, the president of SBPC (Sociedade Brasileira
    para o Progresso da Ciência—Brazilian Society for the Progress of
    Science), has denounced the exploitation of the natural and intellectual
    resources of Brazil without due compensation. But he also recognizes that
    part of the problem has to do with the Brazilian lack of initiative and
    the absence of a reasonable policy of what to do with the country’s vast
    resources.

    Brazilian law against this kind of piracy has been vague and enforcement
    of it is non-existent. In spite of that, times seem to be changing. Ruediger
    von Heininghaus, 72, an Austrian naturalized Brazilian, for example, is
    being prosecuted by the state of Acre accused of selling to German labs
    the Kaxinawá Indians knowledge of medicinal plants. He is the president
    of Selvaviva, an NGO (Non-Governmental Organization) that maintains a plant
    greenhouse in Acre. “I am innocent,” says von Heininghaus. “All I’ve done
    was to help the Indians themselves who asked for my assistance.”

    Biopiracy is nothing new in Brazil. The most infamous case is that of
    Englishman Henry Alexander Wickham, who in 1876 stole rubber tree seeds,
    hiding them between banana leaves leading to a new plantation of the Hevea
    brasiliensis in the British colonies in Ceylon, Malaysia. In a few
    decades the region would become the main exporter of latex, ruining in
    the process the rubber tree-based Amazon economy. Wickham was knighted
    by King George V and loathed by Brazil’s rubber barons who called him “the
    Executioner of Amazonas.”

    Long before that, right after the discovery of the land by the Portuguese
    in 1500, the discoverers themselves and then other Europeans just stole
    from the Indians the secret of how to extract a red pigment from pau-brasil
    (brazil wood). Emblematic of today’s situation, in which flora and
    fauna continue to disappear, the wood that gave Brazil its’ name has completely
    disappeared, being preserved only in a few botanical gardens.



    SOUNDING OUT



    During the 1992 World Summit on Ecology in Rio, the 144 countries present
    signed the Convention on Biological Diversity, a document establishing
    that communities or countries must be paid royalties when companies develop
    products based on their natural resources or indigenous knowledge. That
    document stressed the role native populations have on conservation and
    the fostering of biological diversity, recognizing “the close and traditional
    dependence of many indigenous and local communities embodying traditional
    lifestyles on biological resources.”

    These peoples have not only taken from the land. They have contributed
    to biodiversity by planting and transplanting. To describe how these apparently
    wild places have been transformed by the Indians’ presence, the United
    Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has coined
    the term “cultural landscapes”.

    This assertion has important implications for those defending the rights
    of indigenous populations over certain knowledge or natural product. According
    to the law, wild species are public domain and no one can claim them as
    their property. If the case can me made, however, that they have been altered
    by human presence, natives of certain areas can claim proprietary rights
    over some species.

    The World Council of Indigenous Peoples, although somewhat tortuously,
    defines indigenous peoples as “population groups who from ancient times
    have inhabited the lands where they live, who are aware of having a character
    of their own, with social traditions and means of expression that are linked
    to the country inherited from their ancestors, with a language of their
    own, and having certain essential and unique characteristics which confer
    upon them the strong conviction of belonging to a people, who have an identity
    in themselves and should be thus regarded by others.”

    Rio’s Earth Summit has helped the indigenous peoples worldwide to get
    better organized and define their objectives and ways of achieving them.
    Since then, they have been active in proposing and discussing laws that
    might help them, through their own NGOs (Non Governmental Organizations)
    such as COICA, the World Rainforest Movement, the World Council of Indigenous
    Peoples and the Indigenous Peoples’ Biodiversity Network.

    In a 1994 statement, the Coordinating Body of Indigenous Organizations
    of the Amazon Basin (COICA) has expressed what they think about the need
    to protect Indigenous peoples’ rights: “We indigenous peoples need a system
    of protection and recognition of our resources and knowledge (…) which
    is in conformity with our world view and contains formulas that will prevent
    appropriation of our resources and knowledge.” 



    WHAT TO DO?



    Five years have passed since Eco-92 and Brazil has yet to pass a law that
    would make the country profit from the resolutions made at that summit
    meeting. The question has been dragging in Congress without any hint of
    an agreement soon. Senator Marina Silva, who is from the state of Acre
    and who worked as a rubber tapper herself as a child, has introduced legislation
    that generated plenty of debates.

    Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela, which constitute the
    Andean Pact, are more advanced than Brazil in finding ways to stop biopiracy
    and at the same time have started getting paid for their natural resources.
    Other countries such as Chile, Costa Rica, and the Philippines have already
    passed legislation dealing with the subject.

    In the bill drafted by the Brazilian legislature, articles 18 to 29
    deal with the issue of intellectual property. The articles establish among
    other things that indigenous peoples have the right to maintain their knowledge
    and formulas a secret. The bill also recognizes their right to collectively
    apply for protection under the law of international property rights. Indigenous
    peoples would also be able to share research data, patents and would have
    a guaranteed monetary reward for products derived from their knowledge.

    Congressmen are having a hard time, however, agreeing on what is fair
    compensation and who should receive royalties in case a product is marketed.
    Should it be the Indians, the area where the substance or the knowledge
    was found, the state, the nation? While the lawmen delay their resolution,
    biopirates feel free to roam the country.

    In England, the United Kingdom Royal Botanical Garden, which has thousands
    of plants from the Amazon region, has stopped its research with Brazilian
    plants alleging that the murky legal situation would not guarantee that
    they have the rights over a product once it is developed. Tropical plants
    from Costa Rica and Chile continue to be researched since there is clear
    legislation in those countries and they will receive part of future royalties. 



    ON THE MARKET



    Interested in buying the DNA of Amazon Indians? Samples of them are as
    close as any researcher’s computer keyboard, for as little as $500. Installed
    at http://arginine.umdnj.edu in the Internet, the American New-Jersey-based
    company Coriell Institute for Medical Research has what it calls the human
    genetic mutant cell repository, which is sponsored by the National Institute
    of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS), DNA samples from the Karitiana and
    the Suruí, two indigenous groups from the state of Rondônia.
    Since the Karitiana have heard that their blood is making money they started
    demanding compensation from anyone trying to draw blood from them.

    Some experts believe that all that interest about these Indians has
    to do with the fact that they hardly have malaria, a common disease throughout
    the Amazon. Their DNA might have the key for a cure. Indian blood sleuths
    have also been encouraged by the news that German laboratory Boehringer
    Ingelheim bought for $70 million genetic material from an African tribe
    collected by U.S. company Sequana Therapeutics, which believes to have
    found the key to cure asthma. There was no compensation for the tribesmen.

    The Coriell case is not an isolated one. It is part of the worldwide
    effort put together by the Human Genome Organization (HUGO) since 1988.
    The work is being coordinated by the Human Genome Diversity Project, which
    intends to collect blood from small and isolated communities threatened
    with extinction. While part of the research aims is to find ways to improve
    human health, some groups close to indigenous populations criticize the
    project for its methods, and have dubbed it the “human vampire project”.
    There have been many instances in which the blood was made available in
    the market after having been collected without previous consent of the
    people involved. Oddly enough, the U.S. Department of Commerce has applied
    for a patent for cell lines developed from the blood of a Papua New Guinea
    tribe. Listed as inventors of the product are the U.S. government’s own
    scientists and the anthropologist who introduced them to the tribesmen. 



    GIVING SOME BACK



    Today, at least some companies, with a social conscience have been trying
    to pay back in some way the communities from which they derive new products.
    Case in point, there is U.S.-based Aveda Corp,, a cosmetic company that
    utilizes only natural ingredients and is using the jenipapo tree
    (Genipa americana) to get the rare blue pigment for some of its
    700 products. The firm is compensating the Guarani-Kaiowa Indians who helped
    them, by building bamboo and sapé grass huts for them to
    live in, and planting 100,000 trees in their reservation in Dourados, in
    the state of Mato Grosso do Sul. The benefits shall amount to $50,000.

    Few companies have been so active in developing medicinal products from
    the Brazilian flora as San Francisco-based Shaman Pharmaceuticals. Two
    of these products that use plants from the Amazon—Provir and Virend—are
    in their last phase of development. Both utilize crotão latex.

    Provir, which was already subjected to a battery of tests in the first
    quarter of 1997, is designed to treat chronic diarrhea. Other tests with
    AIDS patients suffering from diarrhea are being conducted right now. As
    for Virend, it might put an end to the search of an up-to-now elusive cure
    for genital herpes, a disease that afflicts 30 million Americans.

    Shaman has already researched close to 7,000 plants from the Amazon.
    According to the company, when they market a new product derived from tropical
    plants they reward in some way the community where the plant was found.
    In a recent interview with the Brazilian daily Folha de São Paulo,
    Megan Ravel, communications director for the company, talked about Shaman’s
    work in Brazil: “For the most part our experiments go nowhere, but if we
    are able to develop at least one drug that works we can consider ourselves
    victorious.”

    As for paying back the communities involved in the research, Megan said:
    “It depends on how much we make with a discovery and it also depends on
    what the community needs. We might build a school, a hospital, a nursery,
    or something else. But the property rights for the medicine are ours because
    we were the ones who developed it.”

    Despite controversy and accusations of abusing the Indian population’s
    good faith, the London-based cosmetic manufacturer Body Shop, which has
    a chain of stores throughout the world, continues its joint effort with
    the Kayapo Indians. They buy annually $160,000 in Brazil nuts from them
    for the manufacturing of shampoos and conditioners.

    There are many people who believe that mankind in general and the pharmaceutical
    industry in particular are indebted to the healers and shamans from the
    tropics. Mark J. Plotkin, an American ethnobotanist who wrote Tales
    of a Shaman’s Apprentice: An Ethnobotanist Searches for New Medicines in
    the Amazon Rain Forest , is one who thinks so. “Every time a shaman
    dies, it is as if a library burned down,” he says. Dr. Plotkin is the vice
    president of Washington-based Conservation International and former director
    of the plant program at the Worldwide Fund for Nature.

    He is in favor of developing alternative strategies to foster tropical
    forestry studies while helping native populations. According to him, Shaman
    Pharmaceuticals and Healing Forest Conservancy (a non-profit organization
    that pledges to return all profits from new medicines derived from the
    forest to the indigenous people) are the wave of the future and an example
    to be followed. 



    THE NATIONAL TEAM



    Instead of just crying foul and complaining about foreign robbers stealing
    their natural resources, some Brazilian researchers and institutes, as
    reported by the daily Folha de São Paulo, are trying themselves
    to unchain the curative properties of Brazilian herbs and plants. There
    are at least a dozen products being tested, from malaria and diabetes medicines
    to contraceptives and potions for poisonous snakebites. Chemist Benjamin
    Gilbert from Fundação Oswaldo Cruz in São Paulo, for
    example, has been testing the picão (Bidens pilosa) tea,
    a popular recipe in the Amazon for those afflicted with malaria or hepatitis
    B.

    Also in search of a cure for malaria, the Centro de Plantas Medicinais
    (Medicinal Plants Center) from Amapá’s Instituto de Estudos e Pesquisas
    (Studies and Researches Institute) has been studying a recipe devised by
    the Waipi Indians, who use an oil made from the plant andiroba (Carapa
    guianensis). The same group is also in the final phase of tests with
    60 diabetics who are being treated with capsules made from pata-de-vaca
    with promising results, according to the researchers.

    At the Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ)a group of researchers
    led by chemist Ângelo da Cunha Pinto has been studying the effects
    of sucuuba (Imathantus sucuuba) in the treatment of tumors.
    In lab tests the substance was able to repair the yeast’s DNA. Walter Mors,
    another UFRJ’s chemist, who is retired, for 10 years has been studying
    the anti-ophidic properties of erva-botão (Eclipta prostata).
    Tests with lab mice were very promising and the solution prepared with
    the herb, according to Mors, was effective in neutralizing the poison of
    every kind of snake he tested. Better yet, he has found out that the potion
    can be taken as a preventive medicine. “If any laboratory decides to invest,”
    he announced, “we might have a commercial product in five years.” 



    SALVATION PLAN



    In February, the Environment Ministry presented to the World Bank a project
    to protect Brazilian biodiversity in the Amazon and the Mata Atlântica,
    a strip of forest along Brazil’s coast. Together they comprise an area
    of 168.7 million hectares, 19% of the national territory, harboring more
    than 75% of the country’s biodiversity.

    The plan is to create seven ecological corridors, joining big conservation
    pockets, national parks, Indian reservations, and ecological stations.
    The first two corridors should be established this month at a cost of $44
    million. One of them is the area of the Mata Atlântica between the
    states of Bahia and Espírito Santo, the other is the Amazon central
    corridor, which includes Jaú’s National Park and areas in the Solimões
    River basin. Indigenous peoples and other people inside the area, including
    farmers will be encouraged to engage in activities that preserve the forest
    and allow a sustainable development.

    Landowners will have the extra incentive of lower taxes if they don’t
    destroy the jungle. The so-called Pilot Program for the Protection of the
    Brazilian Tropical Forests, known for short as PP/G7, is being financed
    by the World’s Bank General Environmental Facility (GEF) and a consortium
    of European banks.

    The plan should face challenges in its implementation in several areas
    in the states of Acre, Pará, and Roraima where the land is being
    occupied by posseiros (squatters) and garimpeiros (precious
    stones prospectors). Some areas of the Mata Atlântica were left out
    of the plan because the expropriation price would be too high. In this
    case, the government decided, through fiscal incentives and special rural
    credit, to encourage farmers to establish private reserves of the natural
    patrimony in which the area would be kept intact and open to ecotourism. 



    SHORT LIVES



    Amid all the dispute about the Brazilians Indians, few people know that
    they are in dismal shape, having a life expectancy comparable only to the
    poorest countries in Africa. Worse yet, between 1993 and 1995, while life
    expectancy increased in the whole world, Brazilian Indians had their rate
    diminished by 5.6 years. According to the Instituto de Medicina Tropical
    de Manaus (Manaus Tropical Medicine Institute), the IMTM, a Brazilian Indian
    in 1995 should expect to live an average of 42.6 years compared to 67 years
    for the Brazilian population as a whole.

    The Amazon Indian lives even less than his counterpart in other areas
    of the country. Those at the Javari river valley, for example, have a life
    expectancy of a mere 24.5 years. The main causes of death in this region
    are malaria and hepatitis, both brought by loggers who invade their territory.
    The Yanomami warriors do not have a much better lot in life. They live
    on average 34.1 years since garimpeiros started to make contact with them
    in 1987.

    Rômulo César Sabóia Moura, the scientist in charge
    of the research for the IMTM, attributes this situation to the little medical
    care given the Indians by Funai (Fundação Nacional do Índio—National
    Foundation for the Indian), a government entity. While the so-called SUS
    (Sistema Único de Saúde—Uniform Health System) spends a meager
    average of $100 per Brazilian a year, Funai invests five times less: $22
    per Indian a year. It is estimated that there are 329,000 Indians in Brazil
    today, down from 2 to 5 million at the time the Europeans arrived.
     

     THE 

    NATURAL 

    WAY
    There is a renewed interest in medicinal plants all over the world. The
    World Health Organization (WHO) now has a list including 150 plants that
    its experts consider therapeutic. And in Brazil right now there is a boom
    of natural medicine. At least 5 million Brazilians use homeopathy as their
    first choice for treatment, creating an annual half a billion dollar market.

    While in the US there are no more than 3,000 homeopathic doctors, in
    Brazil there are 13,000 of them. In 1982 there were a mere 300. No other
    country with the exception of India has more homeopaths. And, in the last
    20 years, the number of homeopathic pharmacies has skyrocketed from 10
    to 1600. Two thousand pharmacists produce 3,000 medicinal formulas using
    minerals, animals, and most of all plants. There are also 250 dentists
    and 100 veterinarians specialized in homeopathy.

    Modern pharmacology does not ignore the therapeutic effects of plants.
    Forty percent of the time industrialized medicines use plants as their
    active ingredient, although generally in a synthesized more concentrated
    formula. The active ingredient in aspirin, for example, was originally
    found in the bark of willow trees.

    According to the American publication The Nutrition Business Journal,
    60% of Yankee physicians have on occasion referred a patient to alternative
    treatments, including naturopathy, herbalism, and homeopathy. In the U.S.,
    the market for herbal supplements grossed over $700 million in 1995 and
    it is expected that this amount will grow to $1.6 by the year 2000.

    Botanists believe that from 35,000 to 70,000 plant species are used
    throughout the world as medicine, most of them growing in tropical forests.
    And in the U.S. there are at least 120 widely used prescription drugs made
    from 95 species of plants, 39 of which are originally from the rainforest.

    Roughly 1/4 of all pharmaceutical products in the market today use substances
    from the rainforest. Among widely used products based on plants we have
    aspirin, morphine, and codeine. There is also digitalis, used as a heart
    medicine; curare, as a muscle relaxant; and colchicin, prescribed as an
    anti-inflammatory.

     IN THE BEGINNING
    Five hundred years ago, 14% of the earth’s surface was covered by rainforest.
    Since then, an area of 3.5 million square miles of these forests, roughly
    equivalent to the size of the United States, has been destroyed. The rainforest
    today occupies only 6% of the earth. As a consequence of this destruction
    it is estimated that 1.5 million life form species were lost and 50,000
    more continue to be destroyed every year. All this was done and continues
    to be done in the name of progress and allegedly for economic reasons,
    even though studies have shown, for example, that 2.4 acres of land in
    the Amazon can produce $1,000 of annual income when clear cut, but generate
    $6,800 a year when left intact.

    Despite all the destruction, it is believed that the rainforests still
    preserve 30 million different species, roughly half of all life forms on
    earth and 2/3 of all plants. This without mentioning the importance of
    these forests to the earth’s weather and atmosphere. A third of the world’s
    tropical forests are in Brazilian territory and, as for the Amazon forest,
    two thirds of it are in Brazil. The country still boasts the Pantanal (the
    world’s largest wetland), the Cerrado (the world’s most biologically diverse
    Savannah), and the Mata Atlântica, an even richer life laboratory
    than the Amazon, despite its much smaller size.

    At the time of Brazil’s discovery, the Mata Atlântica, the strip
    of luscious forest covering the entire Brazilian coast, occupied an area
    equivalent to 12% of today’s national territory. In its widest area the
    strip was as large as 300 miles. Today this treasure has been reduced to
    10% of its original size. From 1985 to 1990 alone 1.2 billion trees were
    cut. Its destruction is a textbook case of how to dilapidate an inestimable
    patrimony.

    The devastation accompanied the several cycles of the Brazilian economy,
    all of them much more interested in immediate profit instead of a long-term
    planned investment. First was the brazil wood cycle that would cut this
    valuable tree destroying in the process 6,000 sq. km of the forest. In
    the XVIII century, the discovery of gold and precious stones gave the jungle
    a respite while 2,000 tons of gold were dug up. During the sugar cane and
    coffee cycles as well as the cocoa tree plantation cycle in the state of
    Bahia, huge areas of jungle would be burned down to make room for these
    crops. From 1.5 million sq. km 500 years ago, the Mata Atlântica
    today is just a sad shadow of its previous self, with just 95,000 sq. km
    left.

    Despite all the recent rhetoric in Brazil about preserving the green,
    Brazilians were and still are too eager to cut trees. Not before the 80s
    did the first green groups start to voice their outrage and the theme became
    a national issue. In Brazil, the jungle and backwardness have always been
    equated. Caipira and caipora, two words to designate a rustic
    man without culture have their roots in Tupi terms that referred to inhabitants
    of the forest.

    “The Amazon’s chemiodiversity is much bigger than the forest’s visible
    part,” says Massuo Kato from Universidade de São Paulo’s (USP) Chemistry
    Institute. Kato has worked in the development of a new classification for
    the Amazon’s vegetables based on the chemistry of its fruits. This should
    help to find what is the best time for picking the fruit as well as indicate
    which part of it has more active elements.

    There are tens of millions of species in the world, according to scientists
    speculations, even though they were able to describe less than 1.5 million
    up to now, half of them living in rainforests. Some scientists believe
    that that proportion would grow to 90% in favor of the tropical forest
    if a complete tally of all species was ever accomplished. Brazil is home
    to the greatest number of insects species, as well as of terrestrial vertebrates,
    amphibians, primates, freshwater fish, and flowering plants. With a handful
    of other countries, it is classified by scientists as a megadiversity land.

     

     

    GET OFF OUR JUNGLE
    Most of all, the military are today in the forefront of a movement to keep
    foreigners out of the Brazilian jungle. Some of them are even ready to
    go to war, literally, in defense of the rainforest against what they call
    the “international cupidity”.

    “We can start a guerrilla war over there as the Vietnamese have done,”
    said reformed colonel Gélio Augusto Fregapani at the end of last
    year in Rio, during a forum called “Amazon – Threat of Territorial Losses,
    Occupation, and Development,” which was part of the Third National Encounter
    on Strategic Studies, a meeting organized by the Escola Superior de Guerra
    ( Higher School of War).

    It was a rare instance of the right and left putting aside their differences
    to join efforts against a common enemy. Former Army minister Leônidas
    Pires Gonçalves was there as well as Roraima’s governor Neudo Campos,
    and historian Lygia Garner, who teaches at Southeast Texas University.

    The assembly’s indignation was palpable when lieutenant-colonel, Marcus
    Vinicius Belfort Teixeira, who at 43 is considered one of the youngest
    most active military voices today, denounced the U.S. effort to internationalize
    the Amazon. And the mood was belligerent when the Air Force officer told
    about a sticker circulating on car windows in London that say: “Fight for
    the forest. Burn a Brazilian.”

    According to Belfort, the Brazilian government is demarcating indigenous
    areas on the frontier with other South American countries—something he
    considers extremely dangerous to national security—succumbing to international
    pressure mainly from the United States and Germany. Americans and Germans,
    according to Teixeira and other military personnel, are interested in the
    mineral-rich area’s subsoil.

     

     

    AMERICA’S 

    WONDER DRUGS

    Coca

    A sacred plant used as food and folk medicine in the Andes for a variety
    of purposes including an anesthetic and calcium supplement. Coca (Erythroxylum
    coca) means simply tree in the Aymara dialect. It was in 1860 that German
    chemist Carl Köler isolated the cocaine and found its virtues as a
    local anesthetic. After that, coca and cocaine started to be used for a
    variety of ailments and were added to several tonics including Coca-Cola.
    Curare

    A poisonous concoction with several plants whose formula was kept a
    secret for centuries. Alexander von Humboldt was the first European to
    witness and describe the way the ingredients were put together, in 1800.
    But curare would start being used as an anesthetic only in 1943, four years
    after its active ingredient, the d-tubocurarine was isolated.
    Quinine

    Used as an infusion by the Amazon natives in the treatment of fever.
    Derived from the cinchona tree (Cinchona officinalis) it was used
    in the 20s in the US for the treatment of malaria. Known as Indian fever
    bark the product was used in Europe since the early 1500s. One century
    later its name had been changed to Jesuit fever bark. The demand for the
    cinchona almost made it extinct. By smuggling it from South America to
    Java, in 1865, Englishman Charles Ledger saved the plant. Sixty years later,
    more than 95% of the world’s quinine was coming from Java.

     

    A Natural 

    First-Aid Kit
    Ayahuasca or caapi or santo daime or jagupe (Banisteria caapi)—Stimulant
    of the senses, with claims to cure cancer. Patented by International Plant
    Medicine Corporation.

    Bibiri or beberu (Ocotea radioei)— Used as contraceptive
    and as a HIV and small tumors inhibitor.

    Cabacinha (Luffa operculata)—Mixed with cachaça
    (sugar-cane hard liquor) it is used against sinusitis and as a nasal
    decongestant. As an unguent it is applied on tumors.

    Erva botão (Eclipta prostata)—An antidote to snake
    bites.

    Erva de jabuti or aperta-ruão (Leandra lacunosa)—Good
    against diabetes.

    Guaraná (Paulinia cupania)— Source of caffeine,
    it fights fatigue. Used in soft drinks.

    Hortelã roxo—Used as solution for ear pain.

    Jaborandi (Pilocarpus jaborandi)—Taken as a tea
    as a diuretic or to induce sweat. Also used in treatment of diabetes, asthma,
    arthritis, and baldness.

    Japana (Eupatoriu ayapana)—Leaves are rubbed on insects
    bites.

    Muirapuama (Ptychopetalum olacoides)- It is reputed
    to be an aphrodisiac. Also used for arthritis and as a stimulant.

    Oriza—Tea is taken for heart ailments

    Pau d’Arco (Tabebuia impetiginosa) A medicine for candida,
    athletes foot and also used as a natural anti-biotic. It has also been
    used against cancer.

    Picão (Bidens Pilosa)—For the treatment of malaria
    and hepatitis

    Puxuri or puxiri or pixurim (Licaria Puchurymajor)—A preventive
    medicine against baby colic.

    Quebra-pedra (Parietaria officinalis)—For kidney stones
    and urinary tract relief. Patented by Fox Medical Center for the treatment
    of hepatitis B.

    Saracura-mirá—A cure-all elixir. Used to treat all kinds
    of pain and also malaria

    Sucuuba (Himathantus Sucuba)—Mosquito repellent. It can
    be used in candles.

    Suma or piriguara or paraguaia (Achietea salutaris)— Called
    South American Ginseng. Used as tonic and to relieve the symptoms of menopause.

     

    Want to know more? 

    Try these places:
    Aubrey Organics, 4419 North Manhattan, Tampa, FL 33614 – (813) 877-4186

    Avalon Natural Cosmetics , 1129 Industrial Ave, Petaluma, CA 94952 –
    (707) 769-5120

    Aveda Corporation, 4000 Pheasant Ridge Drive, Minneapolis, MN 55449
    – (800) 283-3224

    Biogenesis Consulting, Dr. Tony C. Leite, N.D., PO Box 902211, Palmdale,
    CA 93590 – (805) 274-6179

    Conservation International, 1015 18th Street NW, Washington DC 20036
    – (800) 429-5660

    Coriell Institute for Medical Research, 401 Haddon Avenue, Camden, NJ
    08103 – (609) 966-7377

    FDA Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition Office of Colors and
    Cosmetics, 200 C Street SW, Washington, DC 20204 – (202) 205-4494

    Herb Research Foundation, 1007 Pearl St., Suite 200, Boulder, CO 80302
    – Tel.: (303) 449-2265

    Herbal Healer Academy, HC 32, Box 97-B, Mountain View, AR 72560 – (501)
    269-4177

    Merck & Co Inc, 1 Merck Drive, Whitehouse Station, NJ 08889 – (908)
    423-100 – http://www.merck.com

    Paul Penders Company, 1340 Commerce Street, Petaluma, CA 94954 – (707)
    763-5828

    Rainforest Action Network, 450 Sansome Street Suite 700, San Francisco,
    CA 94111 – (415) 398-4404

    Shaman Pharmaceuticals Inc., 213 East Grand Avenue, South San Francisco,
    CA 94080 – (415) 952-7070

    United Plant Savers, PO Box 420, East Barre, VT 05649 – (802) 479-9825

    World Wildlife Fund, 1250 24th Street NW Suite 500, Washington DC 20037
    – (202) 293-4800

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