Published on 20 July 2022

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Founded in 1955, China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences (CACMS) is a comprehensive traditional Chinese medicine research institution directly affiliated to the National Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine (NATCM) and the main task includes scientific research, medical treatment and training.

There are all together 18 research institutes, six medical units, one graduate school, three sub-branches, as well as two Publishing Houses and journals affiliated to CACMS.By the end of 2021, it had more than 6,500 employees, 5 academicians, 11 honorary principal researchers, 54 principal researchers and 2 distinguished principal researchers. It has established 3 Traditional Medicine Collaborating centers with the World Health Organization (WHO). The China Association for Acupuncture and Moxibustion, Chinese Association of Integrative Medicine and the World Federation of Acupuncture-Moxibustion Societies are all affiliated to CACMS. 


Scientific research on TCM is the central task of the CACMS. In the past 60 years, CACMS has made notable achievements in the research work of TCM basic theory, the prevention and treatment of major diseases, new TCM medicines, etc. By the end of 2021, CACMS had won over 870 various scientific and technological awards at all levels, including 54 National Science and Technology Awards. The “Research on Syndrome of Blood Stasis as well as Promoting Blood Circulation and Removing Blood Stasis” won the first prize of National Prize for the Progress in Science and Technology. The research on Artemisinin and dihydroartemisinin, which is a monumental achievement in the field of TCM, won the second prize of national invention award and were ranked among China’s top ten scientific and technological achievements. Tu Youyou, a tenured researcher, was awarded the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for her outstanding contributions to the discovery of Artemisinin and its use in the treatment of malaria. She is the first Chinese scientist in mainland China and won the Nobel Prize.


In terms of research ability, CACMS has the State Key Laboratory Cultivation Base for Authentic Medicinal Materials, the State Engineering Laboratory for Chinese Medicine Process Control Technology, the State Engineering Laboratory for Clinical Efficacy and Safety Evaluation of Traditional Chinese Medicine, the National Good Clinical Practice (GCP) for New Drugs (Chinese Medicine), the National Center for Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) for Chinese Medicine, as well as four national clinical research bases of traditional Chinese medicine, 14 key research offices of the NATCM, 38 key disciplines of the NATCM, and 28 level-3 laboratories of the NATCM.


In terms of medical care, CACMS leverages the strengths of TCM to provide excellent medical services for patients, and has performed an active role in responding to major public health events such as major infectious diseases and earthquake relief. In 2020, CACAMS dispatched the first national TCM medical teams to assist Hubei in fight against the COVID-19 epidemic, which comprehensively took over the intensive care unit of Jinyintan Hospital, fully participated in the treatment of COVID-19 patients, formulated TCM diagnosis and treatment plans, and developed traditional medicines for the treatment of COVID-19, demonstrating its responsibility as a “national medical team”. Its affiliated Xiyuan Hospital, Guang’anmen Hospital, Wangjing Hospital and Eye Hospital are all class-A TCM hospitals. Moreover, it has two medical institutions: acupuncture hospital and TCM outpatient department. The CACMS has over 3,000 beds, with more than 7 million outpatient (emergency) visits and 80,000 patients discharged per year.

CACMS has rich experience and unique curative achievements in the TCM-based and integrative medicine treatment of common diseases, frequently-occurring diseases and difficult and severe diseases such as tumors, cardiovascular diseases, geriatric diseases, diabetes, bone diseases, ophthalmology, blood diseases, kidney diseases, and skin diseases. CACMS enjoys a high reputation at home and abroad. At present, it has the National Clinical Traditional Chinese Medicine Research Center for Cardiovascular Diseases, 16 key clinical specialties under the National Health Commission, 43 key TCM specialties under the NATCM, and 11 key TCM specialties in Beijing.

CACMS has produced a wealth of outstanding personnel for the traditional Chinese medicine industry. It has the right to award doctoral and master’s degrees in all specialties covered by the three first-level disciplines of traditional Chinese medicine, Chinese pharmacology science and integrative medicine, and to award the master’s degree in the first-level disciplines of library and information management. In 2020, it began to enroll Tu Youyou TCM class for the joined study of bachelor and doctoral degrees with Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine. It has postdoctoral studies stations for three first-level disciplines of traditional Chinese medicine, Chinese pharmacology science and integrative medicine. There were more than 170 postdoctoral fellows at the station by the end of 2021.

CACMS library boasts the largest collection among professional Chinese medicine libraries in China, with a total of over 360,000 books, including over 20,000 rare books, high-quality ancient books and unique books. It is an ancient books library under key national protection, a national-level ancient books reparation center and a national ancient books protection center for the traditional Chinese medicine industry. China Medicine History Museum is the professional TCM museum with the largest collection of cultural relics in China, housing upwards of 3,000 pieces of cultural relics. CACMS has 18 national professional TCM journals, including Chinese Journal of Integrative Medicine, Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine, MEDLINE (National Library of Medicine's premier bibliographic database), “Science Citation Index Expanded” (SCI-E), etc. Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine won the journal award at the 5th China Publishing Government Award in 2021.

In terms of international cooperation, the CACMS has established national-level overseas TCM centers with five countries, including the United States, Germany, Norway, Italy and Austria; established six national-level international cooperation bases in the field of Chinese medicine resources, rehabilitation medicine, diabetes prevention and treatment, acupuncture and moxibustion, etc.; and established the Belt and Road joint laboratories and international joint laboratories with Austria and Sweden. In recent years, it has cooperated with research institutes and universities of over 30 countries and regions relevant to the Belt and Road Initiative, and entered into 110 cooperation agreements. The CACMS contributes to the global fight against the epidemic, promotes China’s solutions, and sent China’s first TCM medical team abroad to fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. It has organized training seminars covering more than 100 countries, promoted the internationalization of TCM, and made positive contributions to the building of a Global Community of Health for All.