Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Medicinal plants used by the local people in Xizang (Tibet) have been investigated since the 1960s. The others out of Xizang, however, have been less understood, although they may be easily and strongly influenced by the various local herbal practices, diverse environments, local religious beliefs and different prevalent types of diseases. In 2006, two ethnobotanical surveys were organized in the county of Shangri-la, Yunnan Province, SW China, to document the traditional medicinal plants used by the Tibetan people.<h4>Methods</h4>After literature surveying, four local townships were selected to carry out the field investigation. Three local healers were interviewed as key informants. The methods of ethnobotany, anthropology and participatory rural appraisal (PRA) were used in the field surveys. Plant taxonomic approach was adopted for voucher specimen identification.<h4>Results</h4>Sixty-eight medicinal plant species in 64 genera of 40 families were recorded and collected. Among them, 23 species were found to have medicinal values that have not been recorded in any existing Tibetan literatures before, and 31 species were recorded to have traditional prescriptions. Moreover, the traditional preparations of each species and some folk medicinal knowledge were recorded and analyzed. These traditional prescriptions, preparations, new medicinal plants and folk medicinal knowledge and principles were discovered and summarized by local traditional Tibetan healers through times of treatment practices, and were passed down from generation to generation.<h4>Conclusion</h4>As a part of the cultural diversity of Tibetan community, these traditional medicinal knowledge and experiences may provide data and information basis for the sustainable utilization and development of Tibetan medicine, and may contribute to the local economic development. However, for many reasons, they are disappearing gradually as time goes by. Our study showed that there were abundant traditional Tibetan medicinal prescriptions and using methods. It implies that more Tibetan medicinal plants and traditional knowledge can be discovered. Further research should be done to save the wealth of these traditional medicinal knowledge and experiences before they are dying out.
Project description:Traditional knowledge (TK) of medicinal plants in cities has been poorly studied across different inhabitants' socioeconomic sectors. We studied the small city of Chachapoyas (~34,000 inhabitants) in the northern Peruvian Andes. We divided the city into three areas according to the socio-economic characteristics of its inhabitants: city center (high), intermediate area (medium), and city periphery (low). We gathered information with 450 participants through semi-structured interviews. Participants of the city periphery showed a higher TK of medicinal plants than participants of the intermediate area, and the latter showed a higher TK than participants of the city center. The acquisition of medicinal plants was mainly through their purchase in markets across the three areas, although it was particularly relevant in the city center (94%). Participants of all socioeconomic levels widely used the same medicinal plants for similar purposes in Chachapoyas, which is likely based on a common Andean culture that unites their TK. However, participants with the lowest socioeconomic level knew and used more plants for different medicinal uses, indicating the necessity of these plants for their livelihoods. City markets with specialized stores that commercialize medicinal plants are key to preserve the good health of poor and rich people living in Andean cities and societies.
Project description:Traditional plant knowledge and uses of medicinal wild plants were investigated among the Marakwet community in Kenya. Data were collected through interviews with seven traditional healers and 157 questionnaires for local community members. Traditional names of the plants by traditional healers and local community members were prepared as a checklist. Loss of traditional medicinal names of plants was ascertained with up to 60% overlapping in their nomenclature. The traditional medicinal plants treated 41 diseases within the region, of which local community members understood common ones for treating stomachache (94.8%), diarrhea (70.7%), chest problems (65.5%), and typhoid (63.8%). It was also clear that there was low knowledge index of medicinal plants by the local community members (23.6%) based on knowledge of traditional healers. Clearly, medicinal plants for treatment of malaria, diabetes, tetanus, and pneumonia were recognized by over 40% of the local community members, while plants treating arteriosclerosis, meningitis, arthritis, trachoma, smallpox, rheumatic fever, and gout were known by less than 10% of the respondents. Among plants, the use of roots for treatment was known by over 67% of the local community members compared to fruits, bark, bulb, and flowers (<10%). This low traditional medicinal knowledge in a community relies on the traditional medicinal plants, calling for an urgent need to document the information and perpetuate this knowledge from one generation to another. This can be achieved by collecting the information and developing a database of medicinal plants for future research and potential development of new drugs.
Project description:BACKGROUND: This paper is based on ethnomedicinal investigation conducted from 1999-2002 in Chuxiong, central Yunnan Province, Southwest China. The Yi medicine has made a great contribution to the ethnomedicinal field in China. Neither case studies nor integrated inventories have previously been conducted to investigate the traditional Yi plants. This paper aims to argue the status and features of medicinal plants used in traditional Yi societies through a case study. METHODS: The approaches of ethnobotany, anthropology, and participatory rural appraisal were used in the field surveys. Twenty-two informants in four counties were interviewed during eight field trips. Medicinal plant specimens were identified according to taxonomic methods. RESULTS: One hundred sixteen medicinal plant species were found to be useful by the local people in the treatment of various diseases or disorders, especially those relating to trauma, gastrointestinal disorders and the common cold. Among these 116 species, 25 species (21.55%) were found to have new curative effects and 40 species (34.48%) were recorded for their new preparation methods; 55 different species were used in treating wounds and fractures, and 47 were used to treat gastrointestinal disorders. Traditional Yi herbal medicines are characterized by their numerous quantities of herbaceous plants and their common preparation with alcohol. CONCLUSION: Totally 116 species in 58 families of medicinal plants traditionally used by the Yi people were inventoried and documented. The characteristics of medicinal plants were analyzed. Some new findings (such as new curative effects and new preparation methods) were recorded These newly gathered ethnobotanical and medicinal data are precious sources for the future development of new drugs, and for further phytochemical, pharmacological and clinical studies.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>The use of plants for healing by any cultural group is integrally related to local concepts of the nature of disease, the nature of plants, and the world view of the culture. The physical and chemical properties of the plants themselves also bear on their selection by people for medicines, as does the array of plants available for people to choose from. I examine use of medicinal plants from a "biobehavioral" perspective to illuminate cultural selection of plants used for medicine by the Gitksan of northwestern British Columbia, Canada.<h4>Methods</h4>Consultant consensus, "intercultural consensus", independent use of the same plants by other cultural groups, and phytochemistry and bioassay results from the literature, were employed in analysis of probable empirical efficacy of plant uses.<h4>Results</h4>70% of 37 Gitksan medicinal plants were used similarly by other cultures where direct diffusion is not known to have occurred; eleven plants, including the eight most frequently mentioned medicinal plants, also show active phytochemicals or bioassays indicating probable physiologically based therapeutic effects.<h4>Conclusion</h4>Analysis of intercultural consensus revealed that the majority of cultures in the British Columbia region within the plant ranges use the same plants, or closely related species, in similar ways. The rigor of this analysis is effected by the lack of consistent data on all taxa of interest for all cultures within the region.
Project description:Background: Cancer is a major cause of mortality worldwide with increasing numbers by the years. In North Africa, the number of cancer patients is alarming. Also shocking is that a huge number of cancer patients only have access to traditional medicines due to several factors, e.g., economic difficulties. In fact, medicinal plants are widely used for the treatment of several pathologies, including cancer. Truthfully, herbalists and botanists in North African countries prescribe several plants for cancer treatment. Despite the popularity and the potential of medicinal plants for the treatment of cancer, scientific evidence on their anticancer effects are still scarce for most of the described plants. Objective: Bearing in mind the lack of comprehensive and systematic studies, the aim of this review is to give an overview of studies, namely ethnobotanical surveys and experimental evidence of anticancer effects regarding medicinal plants used in North Africa for cancer therapy. Method: The research was conducted on several popular search engines including PubMed, Science Direct, Scopus and Web of Science. The research focused primarily on English written papers published between the years 2000 and 2016. Results: This review on plants traditionally used by herbalists in North Africa highlights that Morocco and Algeria are the countries with most surveys on the use of medicinal plants in folk medicine. Among the plethora of plants used, Nigella sativa and Trigonella foenum-graecum are the most referred ones by herbalists for the treatment of cancer. Moreover, a plethora of scientific evidence qualifies them as candidates for further drug development. Furthermore, we report on the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms. Conclusion: Overall, this review highlights the therapeutic potential of some medicinal plants as anticancer agents. The North African flora offers a rich source of medicinal plants for a wide array of diseases, including cancer. The elucidation of their modes of action represents an indispensable condition for the rational development of new drugs for cancer treatment. Furthermore, testing the anticancer activity in vivo and in clinical trials are warranted to explore the full therapeutic potential of North African plants for cancer therapy.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>An ethnobotanical survey was undertaken to record information on medicinal plants from traditional medical practitioners in Babungo and to identify the medicinal plants used for treating diseases.<h4>Methods</h4>Traditional Medical Practitioners (TMP's) who were the main informants were interviewed using semi-structured questionnaires and open-ended conversations. Field trips were made to the sites where TMP's harvest plants.<h4>Results</h4>The survey identified and recorded 107 plants species from 54 plant families, 98 genera used for treating diseases in Babungo. The Asteraceae was the most represented plant family while herbs made up 57% of the total medicinal plants used. The leaf was the most commonly used plant part while concoction and decoction were the most common method of traditional drug preparation. Most medicinal plants (72%) are harvested from the wild and 45% of these have other non medicinal uses. Knowledge of the use of plants as medicines remains mostly with the older generation with few youth showing an interest.<h4>Conclusions</h4>A divers number of plants species are used for treating different diseases in Babungo. In addition to their use as medicines, a large number of plants have other non medicinal uses. The youth should be encouraged to learn the traditional medicinal knowledge to preserve it from being lost with the older generation.
Project description:Plant diseases caused by phytopathogens are responsible for significant crop losses worldwide. Resistance induction and biological control have been exploited in agriculture due to their enormous potential. In this study, we investigated the antimicrobial potential of endophytic fungi of leaves and petioles of medicinal plants <i>Vochysia divergens</i> and <i>Stryphnodendron adstringens</i> located in two regions of high diversity in Brazil, Pantanal, and Cerrado, respectively. We recovered 1,304 fungal isolates and based on the characteristics of the culture, were assigned to 159 phenotypes. One isolate was selected as representative of each phenotype and studied for antimicrobial activity against phytopathogens. Isolates with better biological activities were identified based on DNA sequences and phylogenetic analyzes. Among the 159 representative isolates, extracts from 12 endophytes that inhibited the mycelial growth (IG) of <i>Colletotrichum abscissum</i> (≥40%) were selected to expand the antimicrobial analysis. The minimum inhibitory concentrations (MIC) of the extracts were determined against citrus pathogens, <i>C. abscissum</i>, <i>Phyllosticta citricarpa</i> and <i>Xanthomonas citri</i> subsp. <i>citri</i> and the maize pathogen <i>Fusarium graminearum</i>. The highest activity against <i>C. abscissum</i> were from extracts of <i>Pseudofusicoccum stromaticum</i> CMRP4328 (IG: 83% and MIC: 40 μg/mL) and <i>Diaporthe vochysiae</i> CMRP4322 (IG: 75% and MIC: 1 μg/mL), both extracts also inhibited the development of post-bloom fruit drop symptoms in citrus flowers. The extracts were promising in inhibiting the mycelial growth of <i>P. citricarpa</i> and reducing the production of pycnidia in citrus leaves. Among the isolates that showed activity, the genus <i>Diaporthe</i> was the most common, including the new species <i>D. cerradensis</i> described in this study. In addition, high performance liquid chromatography, UV detection, and mass spectrometry and thin layer chromatography analyzes of extracts produced by endophytes that showed high activity, indicated <i>D. vochysiae</i> CMRP4322 and <i>P. stromaticum</i> CMRP4328 as promising strains that produce new bioactive natural products. We report here the capacity of endophytic fungi of medicinal plants to produce secondary metabolites with biological activities against phytopathogenic fungi and bacteria. The description of the new species <i>D. cerradensis</i>, reinforces the ability of medicinal plants found in Brazil to host a diverse group of fungi with biotechnological potential.