Medicinal plants of the world

Medicinal Plants of the World is a comprehensive and scientifically accurate guide to the best-known and most important medicinal plants, including those of special commercial or historical interest.
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Title: Medicinal Plants of the World
Author: Ben-Erik van Wyk, Michael Wink
Publisher: Briza Publications
Pretoria, South Africa 2005
ISBN 9781875093441 / ISBN 978-1-875093-44-1
Hardcover, 17 x 24 cm, 480 pages, 800 colour photographs


This compact and colourful book introduces to more than 320 of the best-known medicinal plants of the world and their uses, in a scientifically accurate reference text. A comprehensive review of each species was not intended but rather a user-friendly guide to quickly find accurate answers to the most obvious questions: Where does this plant originate? What does it look like' In which culture is it traditionally used? What is it used for? Which chemical compounds does it contain? How safe is it? What is known about its pharmacological activity? What evidence is there that it is effective? We also provide short overviews of the various health conditions for which medicinal plants are used and the active compounds found in the plants and their modes of actions. Species are arranged alphabetically by their scientific names. The most commonly used vernacular names are given in several languages, together with well-known botanical synonyms.

The regulatory status of each plant is also given, whether it is listed in one or more pharmacopoeias, including the German Commission E monographs, the new ESCOP monographs of the European Community and the World Health Organisation's series of monographs. If efficacy has been proven in human clinical trials, this is also indicated. In order to have as wide a coverage as possible, a summary table of more than 900 species was added, and a few plants have been treated as main species despite a lack of good photographs of flowers or fruits. The authors also thought it would be useful to cover those plants that are sources of medically important chemical compounds, they are not really used as plant drugs and are therefore often excluded from books on medicinal plants.

Content: Mind-altering and Poisonous Plants of the World

Medicine systems of the world
Plant parts used
Dosage forms
Use of medicinal plant products
Active ingredients
Quality control and safety
Efficacy of medicinal plant products
Regulation of herbal remedies and phytomedicines
The plants in alphabetical order
Health disorders and medicinal plants
Overview of secondary metabolites and their effects
Quick guide to commercialised medicinal plants
Further reading
General index
Acknowledgements and photo credits