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The natural history of medicinal plants

Author: Judith Sumner
Publisher: Portland, Or. : Timber Press, ©2000.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
Wild and cultivated plants have provided humans with cures for thousands of years. Aspirin, for example, the most widely used drug in the Western pharmacopoeia, was first isolated from willows to treat fever, pain, and inflammation. Today it is synthesized in the laboratory, and its use as an anticoagulant eventually could overshadow its use as an analgesic. Other botanical medicines that became significant to human  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Nonfiction
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Judith Sumner
ISBN: 0881924830 9780881924831
OCLC Number: 43286652
Description: 235 pages, [16] pages of plates : illustrations (some color) ; 24 cm
Contents: Brief history of medicinal botany --
Acquiring knowledge --
Medicinal plants in nature --
Toxins and cures --
Defensive strategies and plant chemistry --
Significant discoveries --
Zoopharmacognosy and botanical toxins --
Chemical prospecting and new plant medicines --
Protecting medicinal biodiversity and knowledge --
Herbal histories, considerations, and caveats.
Other Titles: Medicinal plants
Responsibility: Judith Sumner ; foreword by Mark J. Plotkin.

Abstract:

Wild and cultivated plants have provided humans with cures for thousands of years. Aspirin, for example, the most widely used drug in the Western pharmacopoeia, was first isolated from willows to treat fever, pain, and inflammation. Today it is synthesized in the laboratory, and its use as an anticoagulant eventually could overshadow its use as an analgesic. Other botanical medicines that became significant to human health and well-being are pain-relievers from opium and coca, muscle relaxants from curare, blood anticoagulants from sweet clover, anticancer alkaloids from Madagascar periwinkle and Pacific yew, tranquilizers from snakeroot, and oral contraceptives from molecular precursors in tropical yams.

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One of the best histories available on the use of plants in medicine. Fascinating. -- Marty Figley "Michigan Observer and Eccentric" (03/29/2001) If you are interested in medicinal plants, this will Read more...

 
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