“Pharmacognosy” derives from two Greek words, “pharmakon” or drug, and “gnosis” or knowledge. Thus, Pharmacognosy (chemistry and biology of natural products) is the study of bioactive natural substances found in terrestrial and marine organisms (plants, animals, or microbes). The Department was established as the Department of Pharmacognosy in 2004, when the School of Pharmacy is established.


Our vision is to provide theoretical and practical’s with a comprehensive and up-to-date synthesis of the knowledge acquired in drugs of natural origin for our student. We are endeavoring to give a comprehensive and up-to-date synthesis of the knowledge acquired in drugs of natural origin for our students.


Our department strives to create an academic excellence in the science of natural product and Pharmacognosy. It aims to create new insights in the traditional medical systems and to detect traditional plants as promising sources for new bio-active compounds by 2020.

Our Work

Pharmacognosy and Natural Product are taught to pharmacy undergraduates students. Complementary and Alternative Medicine is also delivered to pharmacy students with special emphasis on Ethiopian Traditional Medicine. The lectures and practical sessions provide students with a comprehensive and up-to-date synthesis of the knowledge in drugs of natural origin.

Research in pharmacognosy encompasses the studies of plants used in traditional medicine with the goals of identifying bioactive constituents and discovering new lead compounds. We have also cooperation’s with traditional healers and herbalists and our study also includes on the traditional concept of identification, classification and description of medicinal plants and their uses in the respective medical system. Currently we are investigating natural products for their antimalarial, anti diarrheal, antimicrobial and antiparasitic potential.  

Our department also engages on community project. Currently, as part of this work the department train Traditional Healer on different aspect of herbal drug and traditional medicine to capacitate and strengthen the role of healers as primary health care workers.

Partnership and collaboration

We collaborate with Traditional Health Practitioner’s around Gondar. We are working to build collaborative partnerships with interested institutions and organizations in the country or abroad. We are delighted to hearing from organizations and institutions who wish to collaborate and work with us in Natural Product and Herbal researches, trainings and staff exchanges.

Contact person:

Abebe Mulualem

Head, Department of Pharmacognosy


 Tell: +251918703697