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Medicinal Plants and Phytomedicines

  • Rivaldo Niero
  • Valdir Cechinel Filho
  • Rosendo Augusto Yunes
Chapter

Abstract

Phytomedicines are mixtures of plant metabolites that exhibit some therapeutic properties. It is well-known that mixtures of plant metabolites are generally obtained by extraction with water or ethanol. However, simple infusions such as teas are also used today. Phytomedicines require good quality plant material and rigorous production methods to obtain extracts with therapeutic efficacy and safety. Modern biological screening methods and the mechanisms of action, as well as the importance of synergy, are described. Twelve phytomedicines commonly used worldwide are summarized in terms of applications, efficacy and safety. Finally, the study case of new phytomedicine development is described as an example of the biodiversity potential in supplying novel medicinally important compounds.

Keywords

Medicinal plants Biodiversity Phytomedicines Secondary metabolites Therapeutic potential 

Abbreviations

AIDS

Acquired immune deficiency syndrome

ANVISA

Agência Nacional de Vigilância Sanitária

BC

Before Christ

BfArM

Bundesinstitut für Arzneimittel und Medizinprodukte

BPH

Benign prostatic hyperplasia

CNS

Central nervous system

COX

Cyclooxygenase

CPQBA

Research Center for Chemical, Biological and Agricultural

CYP 450

Cytochrome P450

DNA

Deoxyribonucleic acid

ED50

Effective dose that produces a therapeutic response in 50%

EMSA

Electrophoretic mobility assay

ESI-MS

Electrospray ionization mass spectrometry

FDA

Food and Drug Administration

GABA

Gamma-aminobutyric acid

HE

Hydroalcoholic extract

HET-CAM-test

Chorioallantoic membrane test

HPLC

High-performance liquid chromatography

HPTLC

High-performance thin-layer chromatography

IC50

Inhibitory concentration that produces a therapeutic response in 50%

IL

Interleukin

iNOS

Nitric oxide synthase

LC-MS

Liquid chromatography mass spectrometry

L-NOARG

L-NG-nitro arginine

mRNA

Messenger RNA

MRSA

Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus

NF-kB

Nuclear factor kappa B

NMR

Nuclear magnetic resonance

PGE2

Prostaglandin2

SFE

Supercritical fluid extraction

SGLT1

Sodium-glucose transport proteins

SRT

Serenoa repens extract

TLC

Thin-layer chromatography

TNFalpha

Tumor necrosis factor alpha

WHO

World Health Organization

Notes

Acknowledgments

The authors are grateful to UNIVALI, CNPq, and FAPESC-SC (Brazil) for their financial support and to all the authors of our research groups who participated in the papers cited in this chapter.

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rivaldo Niero
    • 1
  • Valdir Cechinel Filho
    • 1
  • Rosendo Augusto Yunes
    • 2
  1. 1.Núcleo de Investigações Químico-Farmacêuticas (NIQFAR) e Programa de Mestrado em Ciências FarmacêuticasUniversidade do Vale do Itajaí (UNIVALI)ItajaíBrazil
  2. 2.Departamento de QuímicaUniversidade Federal de Santa Catarina (UFSC)FlorianópolisBrazil

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