Antiplasmodial potential of traditional phytotherapy of some remedies used in treatment of malaria in Meru-Tharaka Nithi County of Kenya

Citation:
CN M, Keriko JM, Mutai C, A Y, Gathirwa JW, Irungu BN, Nyangacha R, Mungai GM, s. D. "Antiplasmodial potential of traditional phytotherapy of some remedies used in treatment of malaria in Meru-Tharaka Nithi County of Kenya." J Ethnopharmacol.. 2015;175(3):15-23.

Abstract:

J Ethnopharmacol. 2015 Dec 4;175:315-23. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2015.09.017. Epub 2015 Sep 25.
Antiplasmodial potential of traditional phytotherapy of some remedies used in treatment of malaria in Meru-Tharaka Nithi County of Kenya.
Muthaura CN1, Keriko JM2, Mutai C3, Yenesew A4, Gathirwa JW5, Irungu BN5, Nyangacha R5, Mungai GM6, Derese S4.
Author information
Abstract
ETHNOPHARMACOLOGICAL RELEVANCE:
Medicinal plants play a major role in many communities across the world, in the treatment and prevention of disease and the promotion of general health. The aim of the study was to escalate documentation from an earlier study of medicinal plants, traditionally used to combat malaria by the Ameru community of Imenti Forest area and Gatunga in Eastern Region of Kenya, and validate their ethnopharmacological claims by evaluating their antiplasmodial efficacies.
MATERIALS AND METHODS:
The study was carried out in Meru County at Imenti Forest Game Reserve and in Tharaka Nithi County at Gatunga. Traditional health practitioners (THP) were interviewed with a standard questionnaire to obtain information on medicinal plants traditionally used for management of malaria. Group interviews were also held among THPs and members of the community. The antiplasmodial activities of the crude extracts against chloroquine sensitive (D6) and resistant (W2) Plasmodium falciparum were determined using the semi-automated micro-dilution technique that measures the ability of the extracts to inhibit the incorporation of (G-3H) hypoxanthine into the malaria parasite.
RESULTS:
Ninety nine (99) species in eighty one (81) genera and forty five (45) families were documented and evaluated for in vitro antiplasmodial activity. Compositae, Fabaceae, Meliceae, Rubiaceae, Rutaceae and Verbenaceae had the highest number of species mentioned in treatment of malaria in Meru/Tharaka Nithi study area. Twenty four (24.2%) species showed antiplasmodial efficacy of IC50≤5µg/ml and were considered to have potential for isolation of antimalarial compounds. Eight plant (8) species with moderate antiplasmodial activity namely; Cordia africana, Commiphora africana, Elaeodendron buchananii, Gomphocarpus semilunatus, Tarena graveolens, Plectranthus igniarius, Acacia senegal and Ziziphus abyssinica were documented from this region for the first time for the treatment of malaria. The antiplasmodial activity of MeOH root bark extract of Maytenus obtusifolia was very promising (IC50<1.9µg/ml) and this is the first report on traditional use of M. obtusifolia for treatment of malaria and antimalarial activity.
CONCLUSIONS:
The results seem to indicate that ethnopharmacological inquiry used in search for new herbal remedies as predictive and could be used as the basis for search of new active principles. Eight plant (8) species are documented from this region for the first time for the treatment of malaria. This is the first report on traditional use of M. obtusifolia for treatment of malaria and evaluation of its antiplasmodial activity.

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