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SCNM Announces Ric Scalzo Institute for Botanical Research Grand Opening

Research Begins at Biosafety Level 2 and Analytical Plant Chemistry Labs

TEMPE, Arizona | April 8, 2021

Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine & Health Sciences’ (SCNM) Ric Scalzo Institute for Botanical Research, a 4,285 square-foot Biosafety Level 2 Lab (BSL-2), a compound isolation laboratory and compound identification and quantification facility, is set to open for research April 8 at 2140 E. Broadway Rd., Tempe. The Institute’s team of researchers are led by Molecular Biologist Jeffrey Langland, Ph.D.; Pharmacognosist Yalda Shokoohinia, Pharm.D., Ph.D.; Biochemist Yasmin Abusamra, Ph.D.; Naturopathic Physicians and Registered Herbalists (A.H.G.) Patricia Gaines, ND, Katrina Stage, N.D., and Guillermo Ruiz, N.M.D.

The Institute is working in collaboration with the natural products industry and other institutions to develop new products and improve existing botanical therapeutics through scientific exploration grounded in clinical herbalism’s rich tradition. The research will focus on the development of botanical medicines including new antimicrobial therapies that are critical in this age of novel viruses and antibiotic resistance, cannabis sativa therapies, FDA-approved botanical drug products and more. When considering plant material for research, the team analyzes its background, supply chain and relevant clinical data. A therapeutic botanical made for mass distribution must have a sustainable supply chain for a responsible product to be developed and sourcing efforts are incorporated with ethical guidelines.

“We’re thrilled that many national companies are looking for new research to strengthen the efficacy and safety of their products,” Vice President of Strategic Partnerships and Business Development, Bill Chioffi said. “These new partnerships will provide research that will not only further the use of botanical medicine worldwide but do so in a way that is evidence-based and uses responsible sourcing.”

Hyland’s, a division of the Standard Homeopathic Company, is proud to be the Ric Scalzo Institute’s inaugural Gold Level Member. Hyland’s’ commitment to evidence-based medicine and research on natural products continues to set them apart in the industry. Founded in 1903, Hyland’s remains relevant with its consumers by providing natural medicines that are developed with scientific rigor. Hyland’s and the Institute will join forces on botanical product innovation, formulation, and general research and development using the Institute’s resources including its molecular biology labs and analytical plant chemistry lab. The team will work in partnership with Hyland’s Emily “Nelly” Bibak, M.S., Ph.D. and Shahram Shahabi M.D., Ph.D., D.Hom., as well as Hyland’s marketing and operations teams.

For more information on Ric Scalzo Institute for Botanical Research, visit

About Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine & Health Sciences

Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine & Health Sciences (SCNM) is a school of medicine and health sciences grounded in naturopathic principles.  Dedicated to the ideal that everyone deserves high-quality healthcare, we engage students in rigorous, innovative academic programs, discover and expand knowledge, and empower individuals and communities to achieve optimal health.  Our vision is a world that embraces the healing power of nature. For more information on Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine & Health Sciences, visit

Media Contact:
Amanda Moore,