Current Trends in Medicinal Botany

Man has been using plants for healing purposes since time immemorial. All ancient civilizations have referred to medicinal plants, but the knowledge on medicinal plants has accumulated quickly over the last few centuries. In the past few decades, plant scientists and chemists have put a great deal of effort into identifying the active ingredients of traditional or folk herbal medicines as therapeutic agents. This book is an attempt to bring together the diverse research trends currently used in the field of medicinal botany worldwide. Beginning with the core study of distribution patterns of medicinal plants, the book covers the wide range of chemical evaluation of their therapeutic properties, unravels the impact of environmental stresses on medicinal plants and their active ingredients, and highlights the modern investigations aiming at molecular authentication and quality assessment of medicinal plants, in vitro propagation for enhanced production of bioactive metabolites, and the metabolomic approach for metabolic fingerprinting and identification of new active compounds. This book will be a great source of information on recent research trends in medicinal botany and phytochemistry, catering to the need of students and researchers keen on medicinal plants and stimulating a general interest for the study of medicinal plants with a proper understanding of the associated cultural, environmental and scientific scenario, as they cannot be studied, evaluated and utilized fully and properly in isolation, and need to be looked at in a global perspective.