Tag Archives: tuberculosis

Medicinal Plants Used in Kel, Neelum Valley, Azad Kashmir, Pakistan


Ethnopharmacological studies of indigenous plants in Kel village, Neelum Valley, Azad Kashmir, Pakistan

Ahmad KS, Hamid A, Nawaz F, Hameed M, Ahmad F, Deng J, Akhtar N, Wazarat A, Mahroof S
J Ethnobiol Ethnomed. 2017 Dec 1;13(1):68
PubMed Central: PMC5709976

Investigators at the University of Poonch Rawalakot; University of Agriculture, Multan; University of Agriculture, Faisalabad; Guizhou Education University; and G.C. Women University conducted the first published explorative study of indigenous knowledge used in the preparation of herbal medicines in Kel village in the Upper Neelum Valley, Azad Kashmir, Pakistan.

Kel Village, Pakistan
Kel Village, Pakistan [Source: Furqanlw, Wikimedia Commons]
Writing in the Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine, Khawaja Shafique Ahmad and coauthors note that theirs is the first effort to provide quantitative ethnobotanical data employed by indigenous people in this region, which is “characterized by its remoteness, long distance from urban centers, difficult mountainous terrain, and a lack of government services, including modern health care facilities”:

“The area has poorly developed road and other infrastructure. The people of the area rely on sustainable agriculture. Main crops include corn (Zea mays L.), turnip (Brasica rapa L.), and bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) in an integrated system. A high proportion of local people are associated with livestock. A number of the main occupations are associated with summer tourism, including rest house managers, tour guides, shop keepers, restaurant workers, and jeep drivers. In light of these demographic changes, it is vital to document the local knowledge of medicinal plant usage in this area before such information declines or is lost completely.”

Achillea millefolium
Achillea millefolium [Source: Petar Milošević, Wikimedia Commons]
Working with informants well known in the region for their medicinal expertise and knowledge about medicinal plants, the team documented 50 medicinal plants used locally, including Achillea millefolium, Ageratum conozoides, Artemisia scoparia, Berberis lycium, and Impatiens glandulifera. Newly documented ethnomedicinal uses were recorded for several species: Ailanthus excelsa (fever), Betula utilis (Jaundice), Bistorta amplexicaulis (tonic), Dryopteris ramosa (ulcer), Dryopteris stewartii (tuberculosis), Fumaria officinalis (skin allergies), Galium boreole (skin problems), Hedera nepalensis (ulcer), Impatiens glandulifera (joint pain), Inula grandiflora (liver pain), Jurinea dolomiaea (bone fracture), Plectranthus rugosus (skin allergies and diarrhea), Podophyllum emodi (cancer), Prunella vulgaris (heart diseases), Quercus ballota (dysentery), Rubus ellipticus (wound healing), Saussurea lanceolata (typhoid), and Swertia petiolata (liver pain).

In their conclusion, the authors note the importance of these often-endangered plant species for the people living in the region, and the potential for establishing their sustainable use:

“This study will help us to link ethnobotanical and chemical knowledge to understand the use of medicinal plants by traditional communities. The information obtained from this study will encourage native communities in trading off locally prepared herbal products. As a result of expanding interest, new income-generating opportunities will be available for poor rural household. Moreover, sustainable uses of plant resources will promote biological and cultural diversity which in return will promotion of local biocultural diversity through ecotourism initiatives.”

Read the complete article at PubMed Central.

The information on my blog is not intended as a substitute for medical professional help or advice but is to be used only as an aid in understanding current medical knowledge. A physician should always be consulted for any health problem or medical condition.

Nigerian Ethnomedicines Used Against Tuberculosis – A Collaborative Assessment


Some Nigerian anti-tuberculosis ethnomedicines: a preliminary efficacy assessment

Ibekwe NN, Nvau JB, Oladosu PO, Usman AM, Ibrahim K, Boshoff HI, Dowd CS, Orisadipe AT, Aiyelaagbe O, Adesomoju AA, Barry CE 3rd, Okogun JI; collaboration with 73 Visited Herbalists
J Ethnopharmacol. 2014 Aug 8;155(1):524-32
PubMed Central PMC4154137

Investigators from the Nigerian National Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Development, University of Ibadan, U.S. National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Pax Herbal Clinic & Research Laboratories, George Washington University, and Sheda Science and Technology Complex, in collaboration with 73 herbalists, carried out a preliminary modern scientific evaluation of the efficacy of a number of Nigerian ethnomedicines used by traditional medicine practitioners in the management of tuberculosis and related ailments.

The team collected ethnomedicinal recipes from traditional medicine practitioners in four geographical regions of Nigeria under a collaborative understanding, and screened extracts against Mycobacterium bovis, BCG, and Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

Abrus precatorius
Abrus precatorius [source: Wikimedia Commons, USGS Plants of Hawaii]
They identified 12 plants that screening found to be particularly active: Abrus precatorius, Anogeissus leocarpus [Anogeissus leiocarpa], Cassia siberiana, Combretum molle, Erythrina senegalensis, Garcinia kola, Khaya grandifolia, Pentaclethra macrophylla, Pterocarpus osun, Securidaca longepedunculata, Tapinanthus sessifolia, Terminalia avicennioides, and Tetrapleura tetraptera.

From the conclusion:

“Our study clearly showed that Nigerian herbalists have recipes that have likely been effective to some extent for the management of tuberculosis among the rural population of the Country. The recipes need to be fully analyzed for the purpose of potentially identifying new antituberculosis drug scaffolds and in the process, assist in the standardization of the local antituberculosis herbal recipes. The case has been made for applying ‘omics’ technologies to phytomedicines and traditional recipes which have historically been used over decades or centuries for the treatment of tuberculosis symptoms as a starting point for the discovery of new drugs and drug scaffolds. We anticipate that using ‘omics’ technologies in systems biology approaches combined with chemical informatics of various scaffolds characterized in active at least partially purified extracts, could make studies initiated around plants and indigenous herbal recipes relatively efficient in the rapid identification of new drug leads for tuberculosis…

“The following criteria are recommended for the prioritization of the plants for further studies: (i) potency of the extract based on the MIC values, (ii) published work on the biology and chemistry of the plants, (iii) novelty of information of the plant’s use as anti-TB remedy and (iv) the frequency of occurrence of the plants in the collected recipes. Using these criteria, the following plants are recommended for the initial further studies: Ficus sur, Pavetta crassipes, Combretum molle, Waltheria indica and Crotolaria lachnosema [Crotalaria lachnosema], Anogiessus leocarpus [Anogeissus leiocarpa], Calliandra portoricensis, Cassia sieberiana, Abrus precatorius and Cussonia arborea.”

Read the complete article at PubMed Central.

The information on my blog is not intended as a substitute for medical professional help or advice but is to be used only as an aid in understanding current medical knowledge. A physician should always be consulted for any health problem or medical condition.


Avocado Seeds vs. Giardiasis, Amoebiasis, Trichomoniasis & Tuberculosis


Antiprotozoal and antimycobacterial activities of Persea americana seeds

Jiménez-Arellanes A, Luna-Herrera J, Ruiz-Nicolás R, Cornejo-Garrido J, Tapia A, Yépez-Mulia L
BMC Complement Altern Med. 2013 May 16;13:109
PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3663756

Persea americana fruit and cross-section showing seed
Persea americana fruit and cross-section showing seed [Source: Muhammad Mahdi Karim, Wikimedia Commons]
Adelina Jiménez-Arellanes of the Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social, with coauthors from the Instituto Politécnico Nacional and UIM en Enfermedades Infecciosas y Parasitarias evaluated extracts of avocado seeds for activity against Giardia lamblia, Entamoeba histolytica and Trichomonas vaginalis infection and against drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

The authors note that seeds of Persea americana are widely used in traditional Mexican medicine:

Persea americana Mill. (Lauraceae) is an edible fruit commonly known as aguacate (avocado) that grows throughout the tropics. The seeds (crude or toasted) are employed in traditional Mexican medicine to treat skin rashes, diarrhea, and dysentery caused by helminths and amoebas, for the cure of infectious processes caused by fungi and bacteria, as well as for the treatment of asthma, high blood pressure, and rheumatism. The seeds of P. americana used alone or mixed with other species, such as Psidium guajava, Mentha piperita or Ocimum basilicum, are mainly employed for the treatment of diarrhea.”

Giardia lamblia
Giardia lamblia [Source: CDC / Janice Haney Carr, Wikimedia Commons]
In this first study to evaluate the activity of extracts from P. americana seeds against the organisms that cause giardiasis, amoebiasis, trichomoniasis and drug-resistant tuberculosis, the team verified they are indeed active against G. lamblia (giardiasis) and E. histolytica (amoebiasis), and that the seeds may be a source of potential molecules against drug-resistant species of M. tuberculosis as well.

The authors recommend further studies to identify the active compounds responsible for the antiprotozoal and antimycobacterial activity they observed with extracts obtained from avocado seeds. They are currently working on isolation and identification of the active compounds responsible for the activity they observed against M. tuberculosis.

Read the complete article at PubMed Central.

The information on my blog is not intended as a substitute for medical professional help or advice but is to be used only as an aid in understanding current medical knowledge. A physician should always be consulted for any health problem or medical condition.