Medicinal plants used by the Tamang community in the Makawanpur district of central Nepal

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Abstract

Background: We can conserve cultural heritage and gain extensive knowledge of plant species with pharmacological potential to cure simple to life-threatening diseases by studying the use of plants in indigenous communities. Therefore, it is important to conduct ethnobotanical studies in indigenous communities and to validate the reported uses of plants by comparing ethnobotanical studies with phytochemical and pharmacological studies.Materials and methods: This study was conducted in a Tamang community dwelling in the Makawanpur district of central Nepal. We used semi-structured and structured questionnaires during interviews to collect information. We compared use reports with available phytochemical and pharmacological studies for validation.Results: A total of 161 plant species belonging to 86 families and 144 genera to cure 89 human ailments were documented. Although 68 plant species were cited as medicinal in previous studies, 55 different uses described by the Tamang people were not found in any of the compared studies. Traditional uses for 60 plant species were consistent with pharmacological and phytochemical studies.Conclusions: The Tamang people in Makawanpur are rich in ethnopharmacological understanding. The present study highlights important medicinal plant species by validating their traditional uses. Different plant species can improve local economies through proper harvesting, adequate management and development of modern techniques to maximize their use. © 2014 Luitel et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

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Luitel, D. R., Rokaya, M. B., Timsina, B., & Münzbergová, Z. (2014). Medicinal plants used by the Tamang community in the Makawanpur district of central Nepal. Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine, 10(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/1746-4269-10-5

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