Diversity, Distribution Pattern and Conservation Status of the Plants Used in Liver Diseases/Ailmentsin Indian Himalayan Region Diversity, Distribution Pattern and Conservation Status of the Plants Used in Liver Diseases/Ailmentsin Indian Himalayan Region

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Vol 3 No.1: 28-47

TitleDiversity, Distribution Pattern and Conservation Status of the Plants Used in Liver Diseases/Ailments in Indian Himalayan Region

AuthorS.S. Samant*, Shreekar Pant

AddressesG.B. Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment and Development, Himachal Unit, Mohal-Kullu 175126, Himachal, Pradesh, India

Corresponding authorsamantss2@rediffmail.com; samant62@yahoo.com

CitationS.S. Samant, Shreekar Pant (2006) Diversity, Distribution Pattern and Conservation Status of the Plants Used in Liver Diseases/Ailments in Indian Himalayan Region. Journal of Mountain Science 3(1):28-47. DOI: 10.1007/s11629-006-0028-6

DOI

AbstractIn the Indian Himalayan Region, the studies focused on diversity of the plants used for treating liver diseases/ailments have not been carried out so far. Therefore, the present attempt has been made to study the diversity, distribution pattern and conservation status of the plant species used for treating liver diseases/ailments in that region. A total of 138 species (35 species of trees, 22 shrubs and 81 herbs) belonging to 98 genera in 60 families have been recorded. Amongst the families, Euphorbiaceae (9 species), and altitudinal zone <1,800 m, (i.e., 115 species) are rich in species. Traditionally, various plant parts, such as roots/rhizomes/tubers (46 species), leaves (31), whole plants (30), barks (15), fruits (13), seeds and unspecified parts (8 each), and inflorescence (1) are used for the treatment of liver diseases/ailments. 34 species are native, 3 are endemic and 15 near endemic. 7 species are categorized as Critically Endangered (Betula utilis), Endangered (Podophyllum hexandrum, Ephedra gerardiana, and Nardostachys grandiflora) and Vulnerable (Bergenia ligulata, B. stracheyi, and Hedychium spicatum) using new IUCN criteria. Available chemical composition of plant parts used for the treatment of liver diseases/ailments have been given. Assessment of the populations of threatened species, development of an appropriate strategy, action plan for the conservation and sustainable utilization of such components of plant diversity are suggested.

KeywordsIndian Himalayan Region; diversity; liver ailments; chemical composition; native; endemic; critically endangered; endangered