Home Pharmacognosy ABC honors UIC professor for women’s health research and education

ABC honors UIC professor for women’s health research and education


ABC this week presented the 2022 Fredi Kronenberg Award for Excellence in Botanical Research and Education for Women’s Health, according to an ABC announcement.

Mahady is an Associate Professor and Director of Clinical Pharmacognosy Laboratories at the UIC College of Pharmacy and an expert in botanical dietary supplements and herbal medicines for women’s health and other conditions.

ABC said it established the Fredi Kronenberg Award in 2018 to honor distinguished researcher, educator, and longtime ABC board member Fredi Kronenberg, PhD, who died in April 2017. Kronenberg dedicated his professional life to the study of medicinal plants and phytomedicines for women’s health. In particular, Kronenberg was at the forefront of research on black cohosh (Actaea racemosa​) for the treatment of symptoms of menopause.

Kronenberg, a pioneer in the field of integrative medicine, co-founded the Richard and Hinda Rosenthal Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine at Columbia University. It was the first such program at an Ivy League school and the first government-funded CAM research and teaching center.

Mahady received her BSc in Pharmaceutical Chemistry from Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, and a PhD in Pharmacognosy from UIC.

Current focus on transcriptomics

Mahady focuses on the chemistry and pharmacology of natural products, dietary supplements and traditional medicines and their applications for women’s reproductive health conditions. His current interests include transcriptomics (the study of RNA molecules in a cell or tissue) and proteomics (the large-scale study of proteins) of natural products in cancer, sarcopenia (muscle loss due to aging ) and osteoporosis. Mahady’s research has been funded by the World Health Organization (WHO), National Institutes of Health (NIH), and other leading funding agencies.

“I deeply appreciate and am honored to receive the ABC Fredi Kronenberg Award for 2022,”Mahady said in a statement. “Fredi was a very dear friend and colleague, and I have always appreciated her passion for work and herjoy of living.”

“Hundreds of millions of women around the world still depend daily on traditional medicine and herbal medicines for their basic health needs. Herbal remedies are used to treat everything from anxiety and depression to PMS, pregnancy, menopausal symptoms and more. Yet only a fraction of these plants have been studied scientifically, so there is still a lot of work to be done in the field,” Mahady continued.

Sixth Prize in the Ongoing Series

Mahady’s award is the sixth of annual awards presented by ABC during its current awards season. Other 2022 winners include:

  • Mark Blumenthal Herbal Community Builder Award to Emily Ruff, community herbalist, director of the Sage Mountain Botanical Sanctuary in Vermont, and founder and CEO of the Florida School of Holistic Living. This annual award is given to individuals who have played a significant role in creating a sense of community among herbalists, botanical researchers, members of the herb and natural products communities and industries, and others who work in the field of medicinal and aromatic plants.
  • ABC James A. Duke Excellence in Botanical Literature Award in the Reference/Technical and Consumer/Popular categories, which this year was split into two. The award recipient in the reference/technical category is A History of the Korean Ginseng Industry(Korea Ginseng Corp.) by Il-Moo Chang, PhD, and the award recipient in the consumer/popular category is The Plant Hunter: A Scientist’s Quest for Nature’s Next Medicine​ (Viking) by Cassandra Leah Quave, PhD.
  • ABC Norman R. Farnsworth Excellence in Botanical Research Award to Guido F. Pauli, PhD, Distinguished Professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) and Norman R. Farnsworth Professor of Pharmacognosy at the UIC College of Pharmacy.
  • The inaugural ABC Steven Foster Botanical Conservation and Sustainability Award given to United Plant Savers (UpS), a community-based nonprofit plant conservation organization. The award recognizes excellence in conservation, sustainability and regenerative agriculture efforts related to medicinal and aromatic plants. It is named in honor of botanist, author and photographer Steven Foster, who died on January 15, 2022, and commemorates his professional interest, writing and advocacy work in this area.
  • ABC Varro E. Tyler Commercial Investment in Phytomedicinal Research Award to Max Zeller Söhne AG (“Zeller”), a Swiss company specializing in the development, production and marketing of clinically studied herbal medicines . Zeller is the leading producer of phytomedicines for the Swiss market, according to its website. The company’s history dates back to 1864.


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