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Ethnopharmacological study of medicinal plants used in Douala City (Littoral region), Cameroon

Research Paper | August 1, 2019

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Nicole Liliane Maffo Maffo, Godswill Ntsomboh-Ntsefong, Louis Zapfack, Didier Siefried Dibong, Séverin Samuel Feukeng Kenfack, Eric Tchatchouang Ngansop, Emmanuel Youmbi

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J. Bio. Env. Sci.15( 2), 23-40, August 2019


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From ancient times, the applied use of herbs has been common among indigenous people throughout the world. This study consists of valuing the traditional natural heritage of the Douala region, through an ethnobotany’s study that has been conducted to collect as much information as possible about therapeutic uses of plants. This survey was done through semi-structured interviews of traditional healers and other resource persons and led to the census of 192 medicinal plant species belonging to 139 genera and 55 families. The Asteraceae, Fabaceae-Papilionoideae and Poaceae families are the most represented. These plants are used in the preparation of 403 treatment recipes to treat 175 human illnesses. Among the listed medicinal plants, the greatest number (81 species) are prescribed in the treatment of diabetes, 80 species in the treatment of malaria, 56 species in the treatment of diarrhea. The Eremomastax speciosa, Justicia secunda, Annona muricata, Zingiber officinale, Kalanchoe coccinea, Vernonia amygdalina and Ageratum conyzoïdes species had 100% fidelity indices in the treatment of nappy rash, anemia, nerve problems, cough, otitis, malaria and intestinal worms, headache, respectively. Leaves are the most used plant parts (86.98%), decoction is the principal method of preparation (82.81%) while oral route (97.40%) is the main mode of administration of the treatments. The main collection sites for medicinal plants are the surroundings of houses, roadsides and refuse dumps. Herbaceous have the largest proportion of medicinal plant species (72.92%). This documentation of medicinal plants can serve as a basis for future studies on new medicinal resources.


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Ethnopharmacological study of medicinal plants used in Douala City (Littoral region), Cameroon

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