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Concept: Pharmacognosy

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ETHNOPHARMACOLOGICAL RELEVANCE: Zataria multiflora Boiss. (ZM) is a thyme-like plant belonging to the Lamiaceae family that grows wild only in Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan. This plant with the vernacular name of Avishan-e-Shirazi (Shirazi thyme) in Iran is a valuable medicinal and condimental plant. It has several traditional uses as an antiseptic, carminative, stimulant, diaphoretic, diuretic, anesthetic, anti-spasmodic and analgesic. AIM OF THE STUDY: This paper reviews the ethnopharmacology, pharmacology, toxicology, modern pharmaceutical uses and phytochemistry of Zataria multiflora, and highlights the gaps in our knowledge deserving further research. METHODS: All relevant databases were searched for the terms “Zataria”, “Zataria multiflora”, “Shirazi thyme” and “Iranian thyme” without limitation up to 24th October 2012. Information on Zataria multiflora was collected via electronic search using Pubmed, Scopus, Web of Science and SID (for articles in Persian language), and local books on ethnopharmacology. RESULTS: ZM has played an important role in Iranian traditional medicine. In light of the modern pharmacological and clinical investigations, ZM is a valuable medicinal and condimental plant that has anti-microbial, antioxidative, anti-inflammatory, spasmolytic and anti-nociceptive properties. The oil of ZM contains high percentages of oxygenated monoterpenes, in particular thymol and carvacrol, and exhibits excellent anti-microbial properties. CONCLUSIONS: Overall, antimicrobial property appears to be the most interesting studied biological effect of ZM. The lack of a comprehensive phytochemical analysis of ZM is an important limitation that can be noted regarding most of the previous studies.

Concepts: Pharmacology, Medicine, Lamiaceae, Iran, Persian language, Afghanistan, Pharmacognosy, Thymol

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With the recent advent of glycomics, many medically relevant glycans have been discovered. Sulfated fucans (SFs) and sulfated galactans (SGs) are one of these classes of glycans with increasing interest to both glycomics and medicine. Besides having very unique structures, some of these molecules exhibit a broad range of pharmacological actions. In certain cases, high levels of effectiveness may be reached when the proper structural requirements are found.

Concepts: Pharmacology, Medicine, Illness, Cognition, Pharmaceutical drug, Pharmacognosy

3

Aquilaria spp. (agarwood) has been a part of Ayurvedic and Traditional Chinese Medicine for centuries. Agarwood has also been used as a traditional medicine in Southeast Asian countries, Bangladesh and Tibet. Its common uses include the treatment of joint pain, inflammatory-related ailments, and diarrhoea, as well as a stimulant, sedative and cardioprotective agent. In this paper, we aim to provide an overview of the phytochemistry, ethnomedicinal use, pharmacological activities and safety of plant materials from Aquilaria spp. as an evidence base to further appraise its potential use as a source of health beneficial compounds.

Concepts: Medicine, The Canon of Medicine, Acupuncture, Alternative medicine, Pharmacy, Traditional Chinese medicine, Traditional medicine, Pharmacognosy

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Moringa oleifera is an interesting plant for its use in bioactive compounds. In this manuscript, we review studies concerning the cultivation and production of moringa along with genetic diversity among different accessions and populations. Different methods of propagation, establishment and cultivation are discussed. Moringa oleifera shows diversity in many characters and extensive morphological variability, which may provide a resource for its improvement. Great genetic variability is present in the natural and cultivated accessions, but no collection of cultivated and wild accessions currently exists. A germplasm bank encompassing the genetic variability present in Moringa is needed to perform breeding programmes and develop elite varieties adapted to local conditions. Alimentary and medicinal uses of moringa are reviewed, alongside the production of biodiesel. Finally, being that the leaves are the most used part of the plant, their contents in terms of bioactive compounds and their pharmacological properties are discussed. Many studies conducted on cell lines and animals seem concordant in their support for these properties. However, there are still too few studies on humans to recommend Moringa leaves as medication in the prevention or treatment of diseases. Therefore, further studies on humans are recommended.

Concepts: Pharmacology, Medicine, Cell, Agriculture, Population genetics, Genetic diversity, Moringa oleifera, Pharmacognosy

2

As a result of the prescription opioid epidemic in the United States, there has been an increasing need for effective treatment interventions, both pharmacological and nonpharmacological. Buprenorphine has emerged as a critical component of the treatment of opioid use disorder, yet its adoption has not been without some concerns. This article first reviews the pharmacology, clinical use, and US legislative action related to buprenorphine, followed by a discussion of the misuse and diversion of buprenorphine in the United States as well as internationally. We then explore the impact of buprenorphine abuse as well as discussing strategies for its reduction, including changes in policy, prescription and pharmacy monitoring, and continuing medical education for guiding and improving clinical practice.

Concepts: Pharmacology, Medicine, United States, Opioid, Morphine, Drug development, Pharmaceutical drug, Pharmacognosy

0

Himalayan paeony (Paeonia emodi Royle.) is an important species used to treat various diseases. This study aimed to compile the detailed traditional medicinal uses, phytochemistry, pharmacology and toxicological investigations on P. emodi. This study also highlights taxonomic validity, quality of experimental designs and shortcomings in previously reported information on Himalayan paeony.

Concepts: Medicine, Biology, Taxonomic rank, Peony, Pharmacognosy

0

Tithonia diversifolia (TD) is widely valued in several cultures for its medicinal properties. A comprehensive review of the current understanding of this plant species is required due to emerging concerns over its efficacy, toxicity and allergenic potential.

Concepts: Pharmacology, Plant, Anthropology, The Current, Pharmacognosy

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Pteridophytes have been considered an excellent source of medicine since ancient times and remain underexplored in ethnobotanical aspects when compared to other vascular plants. Hence, an attempt has been made to compile medicinally important pteridophytes used by different ethnic minorities and local people in India.

Concepts: Plant, China, United Kingdom, Vascular plant, Fern, Flowering plant, Pharmacognosy, Lycopodiophyta

0

Beta vulgaris (family: Chenopodiacea) is now much used in the food industry as a rich source of sugar but it is much less considered in medicine. Beet has been used in traditional medicine for hundreds of years to treat a variety of diseases such as constipation, decreased libido, gut and joint pain and dandruff.

Concepts: Medicine, The Canon of Medicine, Food, Beet, Food industry, Pharmacognosy, Laxative, Aphrodisiac

0

Camellia seeds have been traditionally used as oil raw materials in Asia, and are known for a wide spectrum of applications. Oleanane-type triterpene saponins are the major specialised metabolites in Camellia seeds, and more than seventy saponins have been isolated and characterized. These natural compounds have caught much attention due to their various biological and pharmacological activities, including modulation of gastrointestinal system, anti-cancer, anti-inflammation, anti-microorganism, antioxidation, neuroprotection, hypolipidemic effects, foaming and detergence, as well as helping the accumulation of pollutants by plants. These compounds have a promising application in medicine, agriculture, industry and environmental protection. The present paper summarized the information from current publications on Camellia seed saponins, with a focus on the advances made in chemical structures, determination methods, bioactivities and toxicity. We hope this article will stimulate further investigations on these compounds.

Concepts: Medicine, Plant, Toxicology, Material, Fruit, Materials, Seed, Pharmacognosy