Prof. Volker Scheid PhD

Affiliated Scholar, Max Planck Institut for the History of Science, Berlin
Visiting Professor, University of Westminster, London

Following his initial training in England, Volker Scheid spent three years at Beijing and Shanghai Universities of Chinese medicine while also learning privately from different master physicians. Parallel to his clinical studies Volker also engaged in a deepening academic involvement with East Asian medicines pursued at the University of Cambridge, the School of African and Oriental Studies (London), and the University of Westminster, where he was Professor of East Asian Medicines and Director of the EASTmedicine Research Group from 2004 to 2018. He now is an Affiliated Scholar at the Max Planck Institut for the History of Science in Berlin.

Volker has published over 30 papers in peer-reviewed journals, as well as two monographs and joint authored volumes including Chinese Medicine in Contemporary China (Duke UP 2002) and Currents of Tradition in Chinese Medicine, 1624-2000 (Eastland Press 2007). Volker has been in private practice since 1984 and lectured internationally on various aspects of Chinese medicine since 1996.

Lily Lai, PhD
BSc (Hons) TCM, BM (Beijing) TCM, MRCHM, MATCM

Lily Lai was one of the first Chinese herbal practitioners in the UK to be awarded NHS-funding for her pioneering PhD work with the University of Southampton Primary Care department on the use of Chinese herbal medicine for symptoms of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). She carried out the first randomised study in the UK involving Chinese herbs and regulating periods in PCOS and is continuing research into PCOS with the NICM Health Research Institute in Australia. Since completing her PhD in 2015, she has received postdoctoral grants for research in the UK and China involving the use of Chinese herbs for reducing overuse of antibiotics in primary care and in increasing research capacity in traditional Chinese medicine. In 2020, she took on the role of research lead for the evaluation of the Jade Screen Project, a not-for-profit venture offering free individualised Chinese herbal medicines to UK frontline workers affected by COVID-19. She has over 20 publications in peer-reviewed publications and remains a visiting research fellow at the University of Southampton.

Lily continues to strike a balance between her clinical and academic work, working in her busy private practice in Manchester, supervising PhD and MSc students in York, Australia and China, and lecturing internationally on the topics of Chinese herbal medicine, PCOS, fertility and evidence-based medicine.

Andrew Flower, PhD
MRCHM, Cochrane Review author

Andrew Flower completed his PhD at The University of Southampton in 2009 exploring the role of Chinese herbal medicine in the treatment of endometriosis. He has published a number of peer-reviewed papers relating to Chinese medicine research, including two Cochrane systematic reviews. He co-ordinated an EU project that prepared guidelines to improve the quality of clinical trials into Chinese medicine. In 2011 he was awarded a 5 year NIHR Post doctoral Fellowship to investigate Chinese herbs for the treatment of recurrent urinary tract infections (RUTIs) that has resulted in the RUTI trial that started recruiting in Feb 2016. He has a special interest in providing supportive treatment for people with cancer. He is a founder member of the White Crane Academy of CHM and is passionate about the therapeutic potential of herbal medicines…and the importance of rigorous training to ensure this potential is realised.

Cochrane Systematic Review: Chinese herbal medicine for treating recurrent urinary tract infections in women

Cochrane Systematic Review: Chinese herbal medicine for endometriosis

Trina Ward (华瑞娜), PhD

After four years of full-time study in all aspects of Chinese medicine, Trina gained an MPhil in the safety of herbs and a PHD in knowledge of Chinese medicine funded by the Department of Health.

Fluent in written Chinese, Trina has access to the wealth of research on Chinese Medicine being performed in China.

Trina writes the biannual herbal safety briefs which are communicated to RCHM members, ensuring that our membership stays abreast of new discoveries in this field.

Anthony Booker, PhD
MRCHM, Senior lecturer at the University of Westminster.

Anthony Booker gained his PhD from University College London in Ethnopharmacy and Pharmacognosy in 2014, with a research thesis focusing on the value chains of Curcuma longa (Turmeric). In two post-doctoral projects, he also investigated the quality of herbal medicinal products and their ingredients. He has published in a wide variety of scientific journals and books, and his current research interests focus on the use of plant metabolomics and how this can be used to improve the quality of traditional medicines.

He is a senior lecturer in Chinese herbal medicine and medicinal plant science at the University of Westminster, an associate editor for Frontiers in Ethnopharmacology and a member of the Editorial Board of The Journal of Ethnopharmacology. His professional and academic memberships include: Member of The British Pharmacopoeia expert advisory group on Complementary Medicines, Member of The Register of Chinese Herbal Medicine, Member of The Royal Society of Chemistry and Fellow of The Linnean Society.

Sarah Price, PhD
Lic.Ac, DCHM CI (Nanjing), MRCHM

Sarah Price's research focus began in 2004 with an MSc in Epidemiology at University of Edinburgh, after she had already been in practice in Chinese medicine since 1986. Her project from this explored the therapeutic relationship with acupuncturists and its impact on health outcome.

Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine are complex interventions as Chinese medicine uses a theoretical framework that takes into account the whole person, mind and body. This makes it challenging to test for effectiveness and many research trials fail to capture all the change that can be initiated by these interventions. Sarah's subsequent PhD at Leeds explored more complexity and the patient experience of chemotherapy and acupuncture; this time analysing narrative rather than numerical data and leading to several publications.

Sarah was honorary research fellow at the University of Southampton as they supported her next project researching Chinese herbal medicine and asthma. This involved translating hundreds of randomised controlled trials conducted in China extracting both data about the intervention and the methods. She also interviewed practitioners to explore what might be the most effective herb combinations and formulated a pilot study. The data from this project is available for any budding PhD student who would like to take forward this exciting research.

Sarah's research experience was incorporated into her role for post-graduate students of Chinese herbal medicine at the Northern College of Acupuncture where she taught for 25 years.

Research papers:

Godfrey M, Price S, Long AF. Unveiling the Maelstrom of the Early Breast Cancer Trajectory. Qualitative Health Research. 2017. 1-15.

Price S. Fatigue: the big picture. The Journal of Chinese Medicine. 2014. 106:47-54

McIntyre M, Lewith G, Flower A, Price S. Herbal drugs and public choice. BMJ.2014. 348:g4157

Price S, Long AF, Godfrey M. What is traditional acupuncture: exploring goals and processes of treatment in the context of women with early breast cancer. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 2014. 14:201

Price S, Long AF, Godfrey M. Exploring the needs and concerns of women with early breast cancer during chemotherapy: valued outcomes during a course of Traditional Acupuncture.Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 2013. Article ID 165891, 7 pages.

Dr Trevor Wing
MBRCP FRCHM MBAcC BSc (Hons) MSc (Dist) DMed

Dr. Trevor Wing is a recognised specialist in the natural medicine treatment of female health conditions, with particular interest in applying scientific research to traditional medicine. Trevor runs a busy private clinic in London where he carries out clinical research studies and treats a wide range of gynaecological and obstetric conditions including ovarian dysfunction, tuboperitoneal disease, uterine disease, gestational disorders, post-partum disorders and menopausal syndrome.

Trevor graduated with a first class honors degree from LCTA London. He has studied conventional reproductive medicine and holds an MSc in oriental herbal medicine, an MSc in obstetrics and gynaecology diagnostic ultrasound and a doctorate in medical imaging. His thesis investigated the effects of Chinese Herbal Medicine on endometrial receptivity to embryo implantation. Trevor’s current research is investigating the effects of medicinal mushroom medicine on reproductive immunology. Trevor has also practiced gynaecology at Nanjing First Medical University Hospital, China and regularly lectures at post graduate level on natural medicine gynaecology and obstetrics and medical imaging at several universities in Europe and the USA. Trevor regularly contributes to professional journals with papers on his own research and treatment approaches and is a peer reviewer for the journals “Human Fertility”, "Complementary Therapies in Medicine” and “Reproductive Biomedicine Online”.

Trevor is also an honorary research fellow at the University of Portsmouth and a faculty member at the University of Bournemouth in medical imaging and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine and Fellow of the UK Register of Chinese Herbal Medicine.

Doctoral Thesis: British Library EThOS: Investigation of the reproductive effects of Chinese herbal medicine in humans as measured by 3D ultrasound and blood serum

Sample publications:

Wing, T. & Sedlmeier, E. (2006) Measuring the effectiveness of Chinese herbal medicine in improving female fertility. The Journal of Chinese Medicine. , 80, 26.

Treating Infertility with Chinese Herbal Medicine edited by Professors Ronald Watson and Victor Preedy– chapter in the Botanical Medicine in Clinical Practice (2008)

Practical Problems in Assisted Conception edited by Ying Cheong, Togas Tulandi and Tin-Chiu Li – chapter 12.

Rebecca O’Cleirigh, PhD
MSc Herbal Medicine, BSc Acupuncture, BSc Neuroscience, MRCHM

Rebecca completed her PhD in pharmacology at the University of Portsmouth, using in-vitro bioassays in investigate the the use of a Chinese herbal formulae Gui Shao Di Huang on fertility, by looking at the haematology of endometrial and related cell lines. Her MSc research was undertaken at the Jodrell laboratory at London’s Kew Gardens and used HPLC-MS to examine active constituents in Guan Ye Lian Qiao, Hypericum perforatum L..

She has taught at the Northern College of Acupuncture since 2012, teaching and supervising research, teaching pharmacology and leading the module of Chinese classics.

She developed the Master program at the New Zealand College of Chinese Medicine, writing courses on research, advanced gynaecology, preventative healthcare, and herbal medicine. Rebecca worked at the London College of Traditional Acupuncture as a research supervisor and as herbal dispensary manager.

As an RCHM council member for 11 years Rebecca was involved in the approved suppliers scheme, developing EHTPA dispensing standards, and on the ethics committee.

Rebecca has studied in China in both Hangzhou and Anguo, completing an internship in acupuncture and postgraduate training in herbal medicine.

Doctoral Thesis: An in vitro study of the biological actions of a Chinese Herbal Formula on selected haematological and vascular processes related to endometrial receptivity

Clarke, R. Are modern preparation methods compromising the efficacy of Chinese Herbal Medicines? An investigation using Guan Ye Lian Qiao (Hypericum Perforatum L.) The Journal of Chinese Medicine. 2010. 93:35-38

Steve Woodley
MSc, MRCHM, Doctoral Student

Steve Woodley's scholarly interest in Chinese medicine began with an anthropology degree at University College London that focused on medical and psychiatric aspects of healing in various cultures before becoming a practitioner, gaining a second bachelors in acupuncture and then an MSc in Chinese herbs with distinction. He has now transitioned to the hard sciences by undertaking PhD research at the University of Westminster’s Research Centre for Optimal Health sponsored by Pukka Herbs, looking into the effects of herbal medicine on mitochondrial function and whether this can be used as a means to assess the quality and potency of herbs on complex biological systems without animal or human models. Currently in his second year, he has already published a paper in Frontiers in Pharmacology. He continues to apply his broad range of interests to his writings, publishing in professional, academic and public domains on subjects as varied as critical reviews to historical timelines while continuing to run his own private practice in northwest London.

PhD Thesis working title: Mitochondrial Function as a Tool for Assessing Function, Quality and Adulteration in Medicinal Herbal Teas


Frontiers in Pharmacology: Mitochondrial Function as a Potential Tool for Assessing Function, Quality and Adulteration in Medicinal Herbal TeasHerbal Reality: A brief history of herbal quality assessment: From ancient Rome to 21st century mitochondria

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