The Separation of Biologically Active Componenets in Plants Urena Lobota and Amarilia Heinsioides
The use of traditional medicine by herbalists and medicine men in modern times is sometimes thought of as infrequent, maybe even nonexistent. However, in African nations such as Sierra Leone, traditional medicine practice is prevalent. For instance, the bulk of the population in African society cannot afford modern medicine and hospital care, which is limited. Also, many of the diseases that are common to Africa have no set cure in hospitals. Much research is now going on with natural products to find cures for diseases in which modern Western medicine has proved ineffective. For example, the plant Combretum mucronatum was found to be very successful in the treatment of epidermophytons, allergy, coccal infection, and shingles. Other plant species, such as those from the Loganiaceae family, have exhibited anti-diabetic properties. Because of the varied climates in Africa, many different types of plants grow that have diverse qualities. Herbalists use natural products to treat everything from insect bites to gonorrhea. Even though use of natural products is wide spread, formal testing and literature on the plants used is limited. For this reason, any isolation procedure and structural identification of the active components in these plants is helpful.