MPNS Newsletter  January 2020: Version 9 Released.
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MPNS Version 9 is published

We are pleased to announce release of a significant new Version of MPNS.  This newsletter explains the enhancements and their significance for you.

Additional content 

Version 9 includes records from 17 additional medicinal plant reference sources (+11%) and covers almost 28,000 different plants (+ 3.5%).  Version 9 includes 510,000 unique alternative names (+5%) employed either for these plants or for the drugs derived from them.

The new resources include significant data sets from China, Iran and Pakistan.

Complete taxonomic review

Since V8 was released, Kew Gardens have made immense progress with the core plant nomenclature and global taxonomy which underpin MPNS.  The current taxonomy is comprehensive for all plants with all their synonyms. Over 50% of plant families have been peer reviewed by botanical experts worldwide.

We refreshed the taxonomy underlying MPNS V9 using Kew's new data sets. As a result we have been able to remove the final references to out-dated taxonomic sources such as The Plant List and resolved the low quality (single star) names cited in MPNS V8.

MPNS V9 assigns all plants to the appropriate family in the APGIV standard.


Data curation

Behind the scenes we reviewed and improved our data management tools and used these to undertake a thorough review of the entire database.  We detected and resolved remaining inconsistencies and addressed issues raised by users.  We also improved our data import tools and are now tackling the backlog of data sets for subsequent inclusion in MPNS V10.


None of this work would be possible without our many collaborating partners.  Indeed it is a source of pride that we are useful to those working with medicinal plant data sets around the world and have an increasing number of partners.  With regard Version 9 we particularly wish to thank Dr. Roja Rahimi and Roodabeh Bahramsoltani, Dr. Mushtaq Amad and our growing number of volunteers including Patricia van Eijndthoven, Maggie Mason and Rebecca Lazarou.  

We also wish at this point to recognise, and celebrate, our long-standing collaboration with Uwe Schippmann and his MAPROW database.

As always, we welcome your thoughts as to how MPNS could be better.  

We particularly wish to hear of new data sources which you believe we should add to the catalogue to fill any gaps that you detect. What other questions would you like to ask of our search portal?

Best wishes to you all - do get in touch
the MPNS team


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