Ancient Roots, Modern Medicine

Roots and Medicine - Jordan. Traditional healer and black iris
Roots and Medicine - Borderlands traditional healer and scientist
Roots and Medicine -  Curacao, scuba diver and traditional healer.

How Traditional Plants are Revolutionizing the Future of Science

For thousands of years, people have experimented with plants as a way to cure sickness, conquer infection, and increase longevity. Now, medical researchers are tapping into this vast treasure trove of folk knowledge in their quest for modern drugs to fight cancer and other menacing diseases.

Ancient Roots, Modern Medicine is a three-part series that explores this amazing convergence of old and new (from Jordan - The Middle East, The Borderlands - USA/Mexico, Curaçao - The Caribbean). The documentaries, produced by the award-winning Leading Object Media Group (now known as Innovative Media Research and Extension), present fascinating cultures around the globe that still practice ancient ways. The series also tracks intrepid scientists in their exploration for new cures based on medicinal plants. As the research moves forward, both the botanical wealth and traditional wisdom are under attack by human encroachment and environmental impacts of the 21st. Century. It is an epic struggle as science races against time.


  • Gold Award and the Electronic Media Award of Excellence from the Association of Communication Excellence (ACE).
  • Silver Award, Houston International Film Festival's Worldliest.
  • Screening at the 2004 Santa Fe Film Festival.

Funded by the IALC The International Arid Lands Consortium (IALC) is an independent nonprofit organization dedicated to exploring the problems and solutions unique to arid and semiarid regions.

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