MEDICINAL PLANTS USED IN THE MANAGEMENT OF ASTHMA: A REVIEW
Omolola Temitope Fatokun*, Tosin Ejiro Wojuola, Kevwe Benefit Esievo and Oluyemisi Folashade Kunle
Nigeria has a rich tradition of plant-based knowledge on healthcare. A large number of plants/plant extracts, juices or pastes are equally used by different tribes and folklore traditions in Nigeria for management of asthma. The present review thus attempts to analyze the ethno-botanical/ethno-pharmacological knowledge-base for managing asthma in the country from literature, which includes the use of plants, methods employed and prevailing folklore practices. Information was sourced from Hinari, JSTOR, PubMed, Medline, African Journals Online, Google Scholar, SCOPUS, and by reviewing the references of relevant literature. The data search was up-to-date as of May 31, 2016. Pharmacological reports available on medicinal plants employing various anti-asthmatic methods/models and their underlying molecular mechanisms, wherever available, have also been reviewed. The pharmacological validation on medicinal plants is very limited and as such a large number of plants used, with enormous potential have not been validated for their anti-asthmatic activity. Information on the compounds isolated from the medicinal plants, responsible for the observed anti-asthmatic activity is very limited however flavonoids and xanthones have been implicated. This review therefore attempts to show the loop holes and bridge the gap in the existing literature and thus offers immense scope for researchers engaged in validation of traditional claims and development of safe, effective and globally accepted herbal drugs for asthma.
Keywords: Asthma, inflammation, medicinal plants, ethno-pharmacology.
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