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Pakistan Journal of Biological Sciences
  Year: 2011 | Volume: 14 | Issue: 3 | Page No.: 149-169
DOI: 10.3923/pjbs.2011.149.169
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Sub-Saharan Rubiaceae: A Review of Their Traditional Uses, Phytochemistry and Biological Activities

Simplice D. Karou, Tchadjobo Tchacondo, Denise P. Ilboudo and Jacques Simpore

Rubiaceae family is a large family of 630 genera and about 13000 species found worldwide, especially in tropical and warm regions. These plants are not only ornamental but they are also used in African folk medicine to treat several diseases. Based on online published data and library bibliographic research, we herein reported accumulated information related to their traditional usages in sub-Saharan traditional medicine, their chemical composition and the screened pharmacological activities. Indeed, more than 60 species are used for more than 70 medicinal indications including malaria, hepatitis, eczema, oedema, cough, hypertension, diabetes and sexual weakness. Through biological screening following leads supplied with traditional healers, many of these plants exhibited antimalarial, antimicrobial, antihypertension, antidiabetic, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities. Bioactive compounds including indole alkaloids, terpenoids and anthraquinones have been isolated from these bioguided fractionation studies. It is evidence that great attention has been paid to species such as Nauclea latifolia, Morinda lucida, Mitragyna inermis and Crossopteryx febrifuga; however, several compounds should be waiting to be discovered since none of these plants has been systematically investigated for its biochemical composition. According the current global health context with the recrudescence of HIV, much effort should be oriented towards this virus when screening Rubiaceae.
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  •    Anti-inflammatory and Antioxidant Activities of a Fraction I1 of Male Inflorescences of Borassus aethiopum Mart (Arecaceae)
  •    In vitro Antibacterial Properties of Total Alkaloids Extract from Mitragyna Inermis (Willd.) O. Kuntze, a West African Traditional Medicinal Plant
  •    Polyphenols Content, Antioxidant and Antimicrobial Activities of Ampelocissus grantii (Baker) Planch. (Vitaceae): A Medicinal Plant from Burkina Faso
  •    Antioxidant and Antibacterial Activities of Three Species of Lannea from Burkina Faso
  •    In vitro Antiplasmodial and Antibacterial Activities of Canthium multiflorum Schum and Thonn (Rubiacea) Extracts
How to cite this article:

Simplice D. Karou, Tchadjobo Tchacondo, Denise P. Ilboudo and Jacques Simpore, 2011. Sub-Saharan Rubiaceae: A Review of Their Traditional Uses, Phytochemistry and Biological Activities. Pakistan Journal of Biological Sciences, 14: 149-169.

DOI: 10.3923/pjbs.2011.149.169


12 December, 2018
Rachel Biag:
The article contributed a lot in my research study.




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