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PHYTOCHEMICAL AND ANTIMALARIAL STUDIES OF THE LEAVES OF UVARIA CHAMAE P.BEAUV. (ANNONACEAE)

 Format: ms word   Chapters: 1-6

 Pages: 1-88   Attributes: downloadable

 Amount: 3,000

 Sep 22, 2022 |  04:34 pm |  10


PHYTOCHEMICAL AND ANTIMALARIAL STUDIES OF THE LEAVES OF UVARIA CHAMAE P.BEAUV. (ANNONACEAE)


1.1 Natural Product

A natural product is a chemical compound or substance produced by a living organism. In the broadest  sense, natural products include any substance produced by life  (Samuelson, 1999). Natural products can also be prepared by chemical synthesis and have played a central role in the development of the field of organic chemistry by providing challenging synthetic targets (Natural Products Foundation, 2013). Within the field of organic chemistry, the definition of natural products is usually restricted to mean purified organic compounds isolated from natural sources (Hanson, 2003). 


Within the field of medicinal chemistry, the definition is often further restricted to secondary metabolites (Williams and Lemke, 2002). Secondary metabolites are not essential for  survival,  but  nevertheless  provide  organisms  that  produce  them  with  an  evolutionary advantage (Maplestone et al., 1992). Many secondary metabolites are cytotoxic and have been selected  and  optimized  through  evolution  for  use  as  chemical warfare  agents  against  prey, predators,  and  competing  organisms  (Hunter,  2008).


Natural  products  sometimes  have pharmacological or biological activity that can be of therapeutic benefit in treating diseases. As such, natural products are the active components of drugs not only for most traditional medicines but also for many modern medicines (Samuelson, 1999).

 

1.2   Traditional Medicine

Traditional medicine has a long history and has been defined as the sum total of the knowledge, skills  and  practices  based  on  the  theories,  beliefs  and  experiences  indigenous  to  different cultures,  whether  explicable  or  not,  used  in  the  maintenance  of  health,  as  well  as  in  the prevention, diagnosis, improvement or treatment of physical and mental illnesses (WHO, 2008). 


The WHO notes however that inappropriate use of traditional medicines or practices can have negative or dangerous effects and that further research is needed to ascertain the efficacy and safety of several of the practices (WHO, 2008). Medicinal plants have been identified and used throughout human history. 


Plants have the ability to  synthesize  a  wide  variety  of  chemical  compounds  that  are  used  to  perform  important biological functions, and to defend the plant against attack from predators such as insects, fungi and  herbivorous mammals.  At  least  12,000  such compounds  have  been  isolated; a  number estimated to be less than 10% of the total (Tapsell et al., 2006). Most of these compounds have been reported to have particular activity. 


Plant components like terpenes and alkaloids as well as xanthones and flavonoids, were reported to have antiplasmodial effect (Phillipson and Wright, 1990; Christensen and  Kharazmi, 2001; Go, 2003). This enables herbal medicines to be as effective as conventional medicines, but also gives them the same potential to cause harmful side effects (Lai and Roy2004). 


The use of herbs to treat disease is almost universal among non- industrialized  societies,  and  is  often  more  affordable  than  purchasing  expensive  modern pharmaceuticals. The World Health Organization estimates that 80 percent of the population of some Asian and African countries presently uses herbal medicine for some aspect of primary health care (WHO, 2008). 


Studies in the United States and Europe have shown that their use is less common in clinical settings, but has become increasingly more common in recent years as scientific evidence about the effectiveness of herbal medicine has become more widely available (Lai and Roy, 2004). Previous studies have shown that 61% of some 877 drugs introduced worldwide can be traced or were inspired by natural products (Cseke et al., 2004).


1.3.0  Malaria

Malaria is a mosquito-borne infectious disease of humans and other animals caused by parasitic protozoan (a group of single-celled microorganism) belonging to the genus Plasmodium (WHO 2014). Malaria causes symptoms that typically include fever, fatigue, vomiting and headaches, in severe cases it can cause yellow skin, seizures, coma or death (Caraballo, 2014). 


The disease is transmitted  most  commonly  by an  infected  female  Anopheles  mosquito. The  mosquito  bite introduces the parasites from the mosquito's saliva into a person's blood (WHO, 2014). 


The parasites travel to the liver where they mature and reproduce. Five species of Plasmodium can infect and be spread by humans with most death caused by P. falciparum (WHO, 2014). The disease is widespread in the tropical and subtropical regions that exist in a broad band around the equator. 




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