Plants of the boreal forest: using traditional Indigenous medicine to create modern treatments – NNSL Media

August 6, 2023

Natural health products and phytomedicines (plant-based medicines) are used in many countries as the first choice of treatment. This market represents a significant proportion of the total market for health products, particularly in developing countries where a large proportion of the population depends on these products for treatment.

These products are deeply rooted in ancestral knowledge and traditions and are passed down from generation to generation in Indigenous communities. This knowledge represents an invaluable source of information for scientific research.

By exploring this knowledge, researchers can discover new medicinal molecules. Some molecules isolated from plants have become major therapeutic agents in modern medicine. One example is paclitaxel, an anti-cancer agent used in chemotherapy that was isolated from ground hemlock (Taxus canadensis), a shrub used by Indigenous peoples to treat a variety of health problems.

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