Department of Pharmacognosy, Semmelweis University is one of the oldest institutes of both at the University and at the Faculty of Pharmacy. Detached from the former Institute of Pharmacology it took up the activity by the name: Institute of Pharmacognosy and Toxicology in 1914. Professor Zoltán Vámossy was appointed as the first director, whose successors were: Zsigmond Jakabházy, Béla Issekutz, Pál Lipták, János Halmai and Gisella Petri Professors. The current director, Professor Éva Szőke was appointed in 1996.Teaching activity

The Department is responsible for teaching Pharmacognosy, a two semesters mandatory subject to Pharmacy students in Hungarian and in English. The curriculum involves the botanical and chemical knowledge of medicinal plants and vegetable drugs; biosynthesis and accumulation of natural products; quality control of vegetable drugs; activity of medicinal plants and drugs of plant origin.

Teaching activity also includes various special courses: Phytochemistry, Phytotherapy and Pharmaceutical Biotechnology providing additional and deeper information in these fields. The extracurricular research activity of under-graduate students is also intensive.

Postgraduate training is an important assignment of the Department too, including expert courses in specialised training and Ph.D. programs by giving courses and supervising the scientific activity of Ph.D. students.