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1.  An Ethnobotanical study of Medicinal Plants in high mountainous region of Chail valley (District Swat- Pakistan) 
Background
This paper represents the first ethnobotanical study in Chail valley of district Swat-Pakistan and provides significant information on medicinal plants use among the tribal people of the area. The aim of this study was to document the medicinal uses of local plants and to develop an ethnobotanical inventory of the species diversity.
Methods
In present study, semi-structured interviews with 142 inhabitants (age range between 31–75 years) were conducted. Ethnobotanical data was analyzed using relative frequency of citation (RFC) to determine the well-known and most useful species in the area.
Results
Current research work reports total of 50 plant species belonging to 48 genera of 35 families from Chail valley. Origanum vulgare, Geranium wallichianum and Skimmia laureola have the highest values of relative frequency of citation (RFC) and are widely known by the inhabitants of the valley. The majority of the documented plants were herbs (58%) followed by shrubs (28%), trees (12%) and then climbers (2%). The part of the plant most frequently used was the leaves (33%) followed by roots (17%), fruits (14%), whole plant (12%), rhizomes (9%), stems (6%), barks (5%) and seeds (4%). Decoction was the most common preparation method use in herbal recipes. The most frequently treated diseases in the valley were urinary disorders, skin infections, digestive disorders, asthma, jaundice, angina, chronic dysentery and diarrhea.
Conclusion
This study contributes an ethnobotanical inventory of medicinal plants with their frequency of citations together with the part used, disease treated and methods of application among the tribal communities of Chail valley. The present survey has documented from this valley considerable indigenous knowledge about the local medicinal plants for treating number of common diseases that is ready to be further investigated for biological, pharmacological and toxicological screening. This study also provides some socio-economic aspects which are associated to the local tribal communities.
doi:10.1186/1746-4269-10-36
PMCID: PMC4022037  PMID: 24739524
Geo-ethnographical; Ethnoflora; Khyber Pakhtunkhwa; Pharmacological studies
2.  Botanical ethnoveterinary therapies in three districts of the Lesser Himalayas of Pakistan 
Background
Ethnoveterinary knowledge is highly significant for persistence of traditional community-based approaches to veterinary care. This is of particular importance in the context of developing and emerging countries, where animal health (that of livestock, especially) is crucial to local economies and food security. The current survey documents the traditional veterinary uses of medicinal plants in the Lesser Himalayas-Pakistan.
Methods
Data were collected through interviews, focus groups, participant observation, and by administering questionnaires. A total of 105 informants aged between 20–75 years old who were familiar with livestock health issues (i.e. farmers, shepherds, housewives and herbalists) participated in the study.
Results
A total of 89 botanical taxa, belonging to 46 families, were reported to have ethnoveterinary applications. The most quoted families were Poaceae (6 taxa), Fabaceae (6), Asteraceae (5), and Polygonaceae (5). Adhatoda vasica was the most cited species (43%), followed by Trachyspermum ammi (37%), and Zanthoxylum armatum var. armatum (36%). About 126 medications were recorded against more than 50 veterinary conditions grouped into seven categories. The highest cultural index values were recorded for Trachyspermum ammi, Curcuma longa, Melia azedarach, Zanthoxylum armatum var. armatum and Adhatoda vasica. The highest informant consensus factor was found for pathologies related to respiratory and reproductive disorders. Comparison with the local plant-based remedies used in human folk medicine revealed that many of remedies were used in similar ways in local human phytotherapy. Comparison with other field surveys conducted in surrounding areas demonstrated that approximately one-half of the recorded plants uses are novel to the ethnoveterinary literature of the Himalayas.
Conclusion
The current survey shows a remarkable resilience of ethnoveterinary botanical knowledge in the study area. Most of the species reported for ethnoveterinary applications are wild and under threat. Thus, not only is it imperative to conserve traditional local knowledge of folk veterinary therapies for bio-cultural conservation motives, but also to assist with in-situ and ex-situ environmental conservation initiatives, which are urgently needed. Future studies that focus on the validation of efficacy of these ethnoveterinary remedies can help to substantiate emic concepts regarding the management of animal health care and for rural development programs.
doi:10.1186/1746-4269-9-84
PMCID: PMC3904763  PMID: 24359615
Medicinal plants; Ethnobotany; Ethnoveterinary; Lesser Himalayas; Pakistan
3.  Ethnobotanical appraisal and cultural values of medicinally important wild edible vegetables of Lesser Himalayas-Pakistan 
Background
The association among food and health is momentous as consumers now demand healthy, tasty and natural functional foods. Knowledge of such food is mainly transmitted through the contribution of individuals of households. Throughout the world the traditions of using wild edible plants as food and medicine are at risk of disappearing, hence present appraisal was conducted to explore ethnomedicinal and cultural importance of wild edible vegetables used by the populace of Lesser Himalayas-Pakistan.
Methods
Data was collected through informed consent semi-structured interviews, questionnaires, market survey and focus group conversation with key respondents of the study sites including 45 female, 30 children and 25 males. Cultural significance of each species was calculated based on use report.
Results
A total of 45 wild edible vegetables belonging to 38 genera and 24 families were used for the treatment of various diseases and consumed. Asteraceae and Papilionoideae were found dominating families with (6 spp. each), followed by Amaranthaceae and Polygonaceae. Vegetables were cooked in water (51%) followed by diluted milk (42%) and both in water and diluted milk (7%). Leaves were among highly utilized plant parts (70%) in medicines followed by seeds (10%), roots (6%), latex (4%), bark, bulb, flowers, tubers and rhizomes (2% each). Modes of preparation fall into seven categories like paste (29%), decoction (24%), powder (14%), eaten fresh (12%), extract (10%), cooked vegetable (8%) and juice (4%). Ficus carica was found most cited species with in top ten vegetables followed by Ficus palmata, Bauhinia variegata, Solanum nigrum, Amaranthus viridis, Medicago polymorpha, Chenopodium album, Cichorium intybus, Amaranthus hybridus and Vicia faba.
Conclusions
Patterns of wild edible plant usage depend mainly on socio-economic factors compare to climatic conditions or wealth of flora but during past few decades have harshly eroded due to change in the life style of the inhabitants. Use reports verified common cultural heritage and cultural worth of quoted taxa is analogous. Phytochemical analysis, antioxidant activities, pharmacological applications; skill training in farming and biotechnological techniques to improve the yield are important feature prospective regarding of wild edible vegetables.
doi:10.1186/1746-4269-9-66
PMCID: PMC3853161  PMID: 24034131
Ethno-medicinal; Cultural values; Wild edible vegetables; Lesser Himalayas
4.  World Allergy Organization Study on Aerobiology for Creating First Pollen and Mold Calendar With Clinical Significance in Islamabad, Pakistan; A Project of World Allergy Organization and Pakistan Allergy, Asthma & Clinical Immunology Centre of Islamabad 
Pollen and mold allergies are highly problematic in Islamabad. This study was conducted to investigate the type and concentration of airborne pollens/molds causing allergic diseases in susceptible individuals. A volumetric spore trap (Burkard) was placed at the height of 11 m and ran continuously for 3 years. Once a week, the collecting drum was prepared by affixing Melinex tape with a double sided adhesive that was coated with a thin layer of silicone grease. Every Sunday at 9:00 AM the drum was replaced by another drum and the pollen/mold spores were removed and permanently mounted on slides. Using a microscope, the trapped particles were identified and recorded as counts per cubic meter of air per hour. From these data, the pollen and mold calendars were constructed and expressed as counts per cubic meter of air per day. Skin prick tests were performed on more than 1000 patients attending the Pakistan Allergy, Asthma & Clinical Immunology Centre of Islamabad. The results indicated that there were 2 main pollen plants that contributed to seasonal allergies. These were Broussonetia papyrifera and Cannabis sativa during the March/April season and the July/September season, respectively. Although mold spores were continuously detected throughout the year, the most prominent mold was undetected mold and unconfirmed mold species similar to Stachybotrys species, which was high from July to September/October. Two additional molds contributing to allergic reactions were Pithomyces species and Cladosporium species, which were active during January and April, with the latter also being detected between October and November. These results may prove beneficial to both patients and physicians in planning a therapeutic protocol for avoidance and amelioration.
doi:10.1097/WOX.0b013e31826421c8
PMCID: PMC3651178  PMID: 23283209
pollen and mold calendar; aerobiology; Islamabad; Burkard spore trap; Broussonetia papyrifera; Cannabis sativa; skin prick test; SPT; asthma; allergic rhinitis
5.  Treatment of Common Ailments by Plant-Based Remedies among the People of District Attock (Punjab) of Northern Pakistan 
District Attock is one of the resource-based areas of medicinal plants in the north of Punjab province of Pakistan. The local people of the area have always used medicinal plants for their common ailments by traditional methods. Indigenous knowledge of local people about medicinal plants is directly linked to their culture and history. It is therefore felt worthwhile to record the indigenous knowledge about the plant-based remedies. The present communication deals with the common diseases treated by plant based remedies such as abdominal pain and worms, asthma, cough and bronchitis, cold, flu, influenza, diabetes, diarrheoa, dysentery, digestive disorders, ear infections and eye complaints. 25 species belonging to 25 genera were used for common ailments. It was found that plant based remedies were used in effective prescriptions, which are simple, inexpensive, and acceptable among the local inhabitants of the area.
PMCID: PMC2816427  PMID: 20162080
Ailments; medicinal plants; Attock; Pakistan

Results 1-5 (5)