The Tech - Online EditionMIT's oldest and largest
newspaper & the first
newspaper published
on the web
Boston Weather: 38.0°F | A Few Clouds and Breezy

MIT Group Promotes Alternative Medicines

By Pey-Hua Hwang


On Feb. 3, the MIT and Harvard Yan Xin Qigong Associations held a banquet to celebrate a successful conference from Dec. 8 to Dec. 9, 2001 which was attended by over 500 scientists and over 200 scientific papers and experimental reports were presented.

Provost Robert A. Brown, Vice President of Research and Associate Provost Alice P. Gast, and Dean for Graduate Students Isaac M. Colbert, all sent their support for this novel form of medical health treatment. Colbert even said that he would “recommend Yan Xin Qigong and as a possible Physical Education class.”

Yan Xin Qigong is an ancient method for healing and fitness. Its practice in Asia dates back 3500 to 5000 years. The rudimentary principles, which literally involve “working with energy” can be found in acupuncture, traditional Chinese medicine, the martial arts, and many health disciplines.

What differentiates Yan Xin Qigong from other alternative medicines is that it has been subjected to many scientific experiments and has proved effective in reducing the poisonous effects of hydrogen peroxide and keeping neural cells from aging among other positive effects. Yajun Sang G said “this is the only qigong to my knowledge that pays attention to scientific research.”

Researchers praise practice

Dr. Ming Dao, Conference Co-Chair Advisor of MIT Yan Xin Qigong Association, opened the speakers list by commenting on the success of the conference and reading the messages of support from the various MIT deans. He then turned over the speaker to Ms. Na An, a lab manager in the MIT Biology Department who gave a personal testimonial about the positive effects of qigong on both her mental and physical health as well as on the mental and physical health of her family.

“My husband’s 30 year habit of drinking,” she said, “was completely reversed.”

Dr. Denise O'Hara, a principle research scientist at the Genetic Institute, gave a presentation on some of the various scientific testing that been performed on Yan Xin Qigong using treated and untreated tissue cultures and the exciting results. The ability of the Qi to kill cancer cell lines while leaving healthy cell lines untouched was particularly notable.

Deans support research

Associate Dean for Graduate Students Blanche Staton and Assistant Director and International Student Advisor Maria Brennan also spoke and voiced their support of the technique. “I’m looking forward to learning about [Yan Xin Qigong], and I’m sure you’ll be around to teach me,” she said

Dr. Yan Xin first visited Boston in the summer of 1990. Invited by research groups on life science at MIT, he delivered academic lectures on life science technology. Later he was invited a number of times to give academic lectures and conduct experiments at Harvard University.

Interested researchers from various departments of Harvard Medical School and MIT, including the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, the Harvard School of Public Health, and MIT's Biology Department attended the recent Harvard-MIT Yan Xin Life Science Technology Research Conference. One of the most important announcements to the researchers at the conference was the successful killing of 21 types of cancer cells by Yan Xin Life Science Technology serial product XY-Yang Sheng Su, a powder supposedly treated with Qi, and the external Qi of Yan Xin Qigong.

In a world where antibiotic resistance continues to increase and carcinogens are omnipresent, Yan Xin Qigong may become a new avenue to explore, with MIT researchers potentially leading the way.