Kratom research presented at the 2018 NIDA International Forum by scientists from Universiti Sains Malaysia is opening doors for potential international collaboration in the region. Jack E. Henningfield, Johns Hopkins University and Pinney Associates, shared the research findings with Indonesian officials in April and July 2019. During the April meetings, Dr. Henningfield, who is a former NIDA Intramural Research Program staff member, provided NIDA materials on Kratom, the 2018 NIDA International Forum PowerPoint presentations, and other scientific data to representatives from the Indonesian National Agency of Drug and Food Control, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Health Research Development Division, and Bureau of Narcotics. The officials were intrigued by the research findings and appreciated that scientists from their region had been invited to present at the NIDA meeting. In anticipation of further meetings in Indonesia, Dr. Henningfield met during the 2019 Forum with Vicknasingham B Kasinather, Universiti Sains Malaysia, and his U.S. colleague, Marek Chawarski, Yale University. In July, Dr. Henningfield discussed Indonesia kratom research with Ministry of Health National Institute of Health Research and Development (NIHRD) Director General Dr. Siswanto; NIHRD Center for Research and Development of Medicinal Plants and Traditional Medicine Director Dr. Akhmad Saikhu; and Professors Berry Juliandi and Diah Ratnadewi at the Institute of Agriculture at IPB University. Universiti Sains Malaysia and IBP may have some cooperative agreements that would permit the Indonesian and Malaysian researchers to cooperate on kratom research. Dr. Saikhu reported that the Indonesian research began in late August.
Indonesian and U.S. representatives discussed kratom research in July 2019. From left are Ministry of Health National Research and Development (NIHRD) Center for Research and Development of Medicinal Plants Director Dr. Akhmad Saikhu, NIHRD Director General Dr. Siswanto, Utah State Senator Curt Bramble, and Jack Henningfield, Johns Hopkins and Pinney Associates.