Indian Plant Genetic Resources of Medicinal Value
The modern allopathic system of medicine is well developed around the globe; still today many sections of rural population rely on herbal medicines. During the last few decades, nature therapy has gained a great momentum resulting in the expanding use of herbal or plant-based medicines. This can be attributed to the realization of the self-concern of the human being for better health. The herbal tradition is well spread across the world and for many of the rural populations; plants are still the integral part of their life, religious or cultural. Today many pharmaceutical industries are aiming on the human genome as a source of the many unsolved mysteries as to how diseases can be diagnosed, prevented or treated; the scope of developing plant-based drugs has greater significance. Medicinal plants not only support the health problems of rural people but also play a significant role in alleviating their socio-economic status especially through the sale of wild harvested material to the local market. In many parts of India, it is observed that woman folklore, children and landless people are engaged in collection of medicinal plants from wild forest areas, and these are traded directly to urban markets from where they are marketed to national and international markets, thus accounting for about 30–40% of the total household income.
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