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Title: High altitude botanicals in integrative medicine-Case studies from Northwest Himalaya
Authors: Kaul, M K
Keywords: High altitude medicinal plants
Therapeutic promise
Traditional medicine
Ethno-medico-botanical leads
Issue Date: Jan-2010
Publisher: CSIR
IPC CodeInt. Cl.8: A61K36/00, A61P
Abstract: Emerging trends of underutilization of high altitude medicinal plants by Indian phytopharmaceutical industry suggest that therapeutic potential of these species has been exploited to a very less extent despite availability of rich traditional knowledge and also greater possibilities of offering novel bioactive compounds. According to a recent estimate only 20% high altitude medicinal plants available in Indian subcontinent (predominantly herbs) are used in drug trade. In India, we often wake to our own therapeutic wisdom only after recognition comes from the west. High altitude herbal medicines offer therapeutics for many disorders like memory loss, osteoporosis, immune and age-related problems, etc. particularly the ones for which no modern medicines are available. Of late, these plants are also reported to offer satisfactory therapies for deadly diseases like AIDS and cancer. As high altitude plants are growing under stressful situations and exposed to high UV radiations, they are reported to have immense potential in biological radioprotection. An attempt has been made to highlight the promise that these stress-tolerant plants hold in alleviating human and veterinary ailments with less side effects. Studies on the characteristics of ethnopharmacological resources in high altitude Northwest Himalayan region revealing use of 154 botanicals in home remedy patterns of 55 common ailments as well as integration of food and medicine in several traditional herbal therapies are discussed and included in the text.
Page(s): 18-25
ISSN: 0975-1068 (Online); 0972-5938 (Print)
Source:IJTK Vol.09(1) [January 2010]

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