12th Global Pharma Conference & Expo
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Track 14: Pharmacognosy

What is Pharmacognosy?

Pharmacognosy is the study of medicines or crude medications derived from natural sources such as plants, microbes, and animals. It consists of an examination of their biological, chemical, biochemical, and physical aspects.

Plant-derived medicines are thought to be easier for the human body to accept because they are found in nature and are not manmade. It is estimated that over 25% of prescription medicines in the United States contain an active component derived from nature. It is believed that traditional remedies made from plants and herbs are used by around 80% of the people in poor countries.

Plants and creatures are employed in the development of conventional and alternative medicines in a variety of ways. The plant’s beneficial active element can be present anywhere in its physical structure, such as a flower’s petal or stem.

Because the natural product may be inactive in its native physical state, it may require a chemical reaction or alteration to activate it. The active ingredient is sometimes taken directly from the plant, but it can also be created through synthesis by generating a molecule that functions similarly to the plant extract.

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Medicinal Plant Examples

Many active chemicals used in medicine are derived from plants. Some examples include salicylic acid and caffeine. These natural chemicals are frequently used as a foundation for the development of novel medications.

Here are some examples of plants that have an influence on humans:

Fusarium pallidoroseum is the source of apicidin, a fungus metabolite with antiprotozoal action in vitro that may be used to combat malaria factor. The parasite Plasmodium berghei

Taxus Baccata (yew tree): this tree can be used to extract Baccatin III, which is vital in the manufacturing of various anticancer medications.

Hericium erinaceus (lion’s mane mushroom): a fungus that appears to improve neurological and cognitive function, as well as protect the stomach mucus membrane layer and alleviate symptoms of stomach ulcers. It is used to treat Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, depression, anxiety, Parkinson’s disease, and multiple sclerosis, while evidence for its effectiveness in these disorders is lacking.

Catharanthus roseus (Madagascar periwinkle): a natural source of over 70 distinct indole alkaloids, catharanthus roseus was the source of treatments for juvenile leukaemia and Hodgkin’s disease.

Mountain aloe (Aloe marlothii) has been recognised as a therapy for intestinal parasites.

Rumex acetosella (common sorrel): a diuretic herb used to treat sinusitis (inflammation of the nasal passages), bronchitis (inflammation of the bronchial tube lining), and cancer. There is little evidence that sorrel can treat cancer or bronchitis.


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Pharmacognosy’s History

Humans have been producing medication from plants and other organisms for ages, therefore pharmacognosy is widely regarded as the oldest brand of pharmacy. There is 5000-year-old evidence of medicine manufacture on Sumerian clay from Nagpur, and approximately 12 ancient medical recipes with plant elements such as poppy and mandrake, a Mediterranean plant in the nightshade family, have been discovered.

Many ancient books mention the creation of medications from plants. Throughout history, information has been revealed that humans made medications out of garlic, mustard, cabbage, parsley, and mint.

There was no single country or nation that dominated plant and organism medicine manufacture; the activity was carried out globally. Ingredients would vary depending on what people had readily available in their environment.

Today’s Pharmacognosy

Pharmacognosy is still an important science for the development of future medications, with Japan and the United States leading the way. Researchers are encouraged to consider the ethical implications of employing natural items as medications.

Conservation of various flora, for example, must be considered to ensure that specific plants and organisms are not endangered. Furthermore, strict quality control requirements are required to ensure that plants used for therapeutic reasons are correctly recognised and that any medications generated from them are of sufficient purity to be safe for use. It is advised that review intervals be implemented in order to fully identify and assess the dangers of long-term usage of natural therapies. Natural-source medicines are frequently recommended or provided by persons outside of medical or pharmaceutical organisations, which means that the advice given is not always accurate or safe.

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Subtopics Of Pharmacognosy





Herbal Interactions

Marine Pharmacognosy

General Pharmacology   

Autonomic nervous system Pharmacology             

Drugs for cough & Bronchial Asthma        


Peripheral Nervous System (PNS) Pharmacology  

CNS Pharmacology

CVS Pharmacology

Endocrine pharmacology              

Gastrointestinal drugs Pharmacology

Blood Pharmacology

Chemotherapy of microbial diseases

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