Ethnobotany in the Maromizaha's protected area: Malagasy medicinal plants as source of phytochemicals for human health
Most of the population in developing countries depends mainly on traditional medicine for the treatment of ailments. The dependence on remedies derived from medicinal plants is particularly important in these countries, as Madagascar, where modern medicine is often absent or simply too expensive: economic devaluation of the developing countries leads to higher prices of pharmaceuticals and makes medicinal plants and traditional medicine more attractive. Due to such long isolation and to its tropical location, Madagascar is characterized by one of the highest rates of endemism and biodiversity in the world. For this reason, it is not surprising that Malagasy flora can provide a wide variety of medicinal plants as an affordable alternative to expensive western medicine: it is important to characterize and valorize the Malagasy ethnobotanic biodiversity in order to preserve botanic and genetic information on medicinal endangered plants. The aim of this study was to obtain information from local population and collect plant material for phytochemical characterization in order to identify and quantify the main bioactive compounds and catalog oral botanic information avoiding the progressive loss of rural culture. For this reason, a survey on several Malagasy medicinal plants was carried out in the Maromizaha's protected area: information on 54 plant family (146 species) was obtained. These plants are usually used as decoction and infusion of the leaves, stems, bark, and other plant parts for the treatment of 40 different diseases.
Beccaro, G.L., Roman, A., Donno, D., Torti, V., Mellano, M.G. and Giacoma, C. (2020). Ethnobotany in the Maromizaha's protected area: Malagasy medicinal plants as source of phytochemicals for human health. Acta Hortic. 1267, 69-76
ethnobotanic medicine, bioactive compounds, biodiversity, HPLC fingerprint