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PHYTOCHEMICAL AND ANTIMICROBIAL STUDIES OF THE ETHANOL EXTRACT OF THE LEAVES OF CUSSONIA BARTERI SEEMANN (ARALIACEAE)

 Format: ms word   Chapters: 1-6

 Pages: 1-57   Attributes: downloadable

 Amount: 3,000

 Sep 22, 2022 |  04:12 pm |  8


PHYTOCHEMICAL AND ANTIMICROBIAL STUDIES OF THE ETHANOL EXTRACT OF THE LEAVES OF CUSSONIA BARTERI SEEMANN (ARALIACEAE)


1.1  Medicinal Plants

Medicinal plants are plants that have at least one of their parts (leaves, stem, barks or roots used  for  therapeutic  purposes  (Bruneton,1993).  Recently,  medicinal plants  have  become important  for  the  treatment  of  different  disease  conditions,  such  as  diabetes,  malaria andanaemia (Fola, 1993). The availability and relatively cheaper cost of medicinal plants in sub-Saharan Africa, makes them more attractive as therapeutic agents when compared to 'modern' medicines (Agbor and Ngogang, 2005; Agboret al., 2005). 


Indeed, the market and public demand has been so great that there is a great risk that many medicinal plants today, face either extinction or loss of genetic diversity (Misra, 2009).The history of plants being used for medicinal purpose is probably as old as the history of mankind(Shrikumar and Ravi, 2007).


Medicinal plants constitute the main source of new pharmaceuticals and healthcare products (Ivanovaet al., 2005).The use of medicinal plants in the industrialised societies has been traced to the extraction and development of several drugs from these plants as well as from traditionally used folk medicine (Shrikumar and Ravi, 2007). The use of traditional medicine is widespread  in India (Jeyachandran and Mahesh,  2007). 


A growing body of evidence indicates that secondary plant metabolites play critical roles in human health and may be nutritionally important (Hertoget al., 1993). It is believed that crude extract from medicinal plants are more biologically active than isolated compounds due to their synergistic effects (Jana and Shekhawat, 2010).


Phytochemical screening of plants has revealed the presence of numerous  chemicals  including  alkaloids,  tannins,  flavonoids,  steroids,  glycosides  and saponins etc. Secondary metabolites of plants serve as defense mechanisms against predation by many microorganisms, insects and herbivores (Cowan, 1999). The use of plants for healing purposes predates human history and forms the origin of much modern medicine (Vickers and Zollman, 1999).


The knowledge of their healing properties has been transmitted over the centuries within and among human communities. Currently, data on the antimicrobial activity of numerous plants, so  far  considered  empirical,  have  been  scientifically confirmed,  concomitantly  with the increasing  number  of  reports  on  pathogenic  microorganisms  resistant  to  antimicrobials. 


Products derived from plants may potentially control microbial growth in diverse situations and in the specific case of disease treatment, numerous studies have aimed to describe the chemical  composition  of  these  plant  antimicrobials  and  the  mechanisms  involved  in microbial growth inhibition, either separately or associated with conventional antimicrobials (Silvaand Fernandes, 2010).


Infectious  diseases  represent  an  important  cause  of  morbidity and  mortality among  the general   population,   particularly   in   developing   countries.  Therefore,   pharmaceutical companies  have  been  motivated  to  develop  new  antimicrobial  drugs  in  recent  years, especially  due to  the  constant  emergence  of  microorganisms  resistant  to  conventional antimicrobials.  


Apparently,  bacterial  species  present the  genetic  ability  to  acquire  and transmit resistance against currently available antibacterials since there are frequent reports on the isolation of bacteria that are known to be sensitive to routinely used drugs and became multiresistant  to  other  medications  available  on  the  market  (Nascimentoet  al.,  2000, Sakagami and Kajimura, 2002).


Consequently, common strategies adopted by pharmaceutical companies to supply the market with new antimicrobial drugs include changing the molecular structure of the existing medicines in order to make them more efficient or recover the activity lost due to bacterial resistance mechanisms (Chartone-Souza, 1998).



1.2 Sources of Drugs

Drugs are substances administered to humans and animals for diagnosis or treatment  of diseases (Somnath, 2010). There are four sources of drug:


1.  Natural sources


2.   Semi synthetic sources


3.   Synthetic sources


4.   Biosynthetic sources (genetically engineered drug)



1.2.1   Natural Sources

Drugs can be obtained from plants, animals, minerals and microorganisms (Somnath, 2010):


A) PLANTS:

Natural products once served human kind as the source of all drugs, and higher plants provided most of these therapeutic agents. Today natural products (and their derivatives and analogs) still represent over 50% of all drugs in clinical use, with higher plant-derived natural products  representing  25%  of  the  total,  (Balandrinet  al.,  1993).  


The  World  Health Organization estimates that 80% of the people in developing countries of the world rely on traditional medicine for their primary health care, and about 85% of traditional medicine involves the use of plant extracts. This means that about 3.5 to 4 billion people in the world rely on plants as sources of drugs, (Farnsworth, 1988).




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