Special Issue "Wild Edible and Medicinal Plants: Ecophysiological and Cultural Aspects for Commercial Cultivation"
Deadline for manuscript submissions: 20 February 2024 | Viewed by 10523
Interests: production systems and quality of vegetables; postharvest physiology and technology of vegetables; minimally processed vegetables and fresh-cut salads
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Interests: horticulture; plant physiology; postharvest physiology and technology
The increasing awareness of consumers seeking healthier or functional food, as well as the increasing demand of the pharmaceutical industry for plant-derived medicinal compounds, together with the difficulty of harvesting wild edible and medicinal plants from the wild, have led to serious efforts for the domestication and introduction in commercial cultivation of such species, and the distribution of their products (raw, processed or extracts) to the markets. This would also aid in preventing the extinction of some endemic and rare species due to climate change, extensive collection from their natural habitats, and other anthropogenic activities. To date, the published scientific papers related to those species are mostly focusing on their nutritional, medicinal, and even anti-dietetic properties, the metabolic profile of their products and the health impact for the consumers. However, there is still a scarcity of knowledge regarding such species’ biological cycle (e.g., tissue differentiation and growth, and anthesis); their ecophysiological adaptation in diverse environments; the yield and, in particular, their content in phytochemicals beneficial for humans, in relation to the soil and climatic conditions prevailing during growth; and the techniques employed for the production of propagating material and the cultivation in commercial agricultural systems. In addition to the abovementioned pre-harvest factors, proper post-harvest handling is of high importance in preserving the nutritional and medicinal value of those species, so as to readily provide consumers with fresh (or processed) functional food of high organoleptic quality and health impact, and the pharmaceutical industry with herbal substances rich in phytochemicals.
This Special Issue of Plants welcomes scientific articles exploring the effect of ecophysiological factors, cultural techniques employed in agricultural systems—from organic production in the field to soilless Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA)—as well as postharvest handling and processing, on the productivity, organoleptic quality, dietary, and phytochemical-medicinal properties of wild edible and medicinal species.
Dr. Ioannis Karapanos
Prof. Dr. Harold Christofer Passam
Dr. Alexios Alexopoulos
Manuscript Submission Information
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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Plants is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.
Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2700 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.
- endangered plants
- underutilized species
- nutritional and pharmaceutical properties
- cultivation systems
- propagating material
- post-harvest handling
- crop physiology
The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.
Title: Spontaneous Officinal Plants of the Cilento, Vallo Di Diano and Alburni National Park: Between Tradition, Protection, Enhancement, and Recovery
Authors: Enrica De Falco 1; Vito Fico 2; Gaia Barile 1; Maria Pergola 1,*
Affiliation: 1 Degree Course of Agriculture, Dipartimento di Farmacia, Università degli Studi di Salerno, (DIFARMA), Via Giovanni Paolo II, 132, 84084 Fisciano, Italy 2 Associazione “Sanza città della lavanda”, 84030 Sanza (SA), Italy
Abstract: The Campania Region is rich in plant biodiversity both in terms of cultivated and spontaneous species and, among these, particularly of species of medicinal interest. If specific measures have been envisaged to safeguard the agrobiodiversity, both in the previous programming period of the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and in the current one, there have been no targeted interventions regarding the medicinal heritage. Collecting and using wild plants is a tradition strongly rooted in the rural communities of Cilento (Salerno province), as are the popular uses, traditions and customs connected to them. So, the knowledge of this heritage, its protection and enhancement are indispensable prerogatives for safeguarding it. The aim of the study was to deepen the knowledge on the heritage and traditional uses of some medicinal plants of the Cilento, Vallo di Diano and Alburni National Park to evaluate their productive potential to increase their possible uses to recover and enhance them, and to sustain the territory. The research took into consideration the following spontaneous medicinal plants characteristic of this area: Foeniculum vulgare Mill.; Hypericum perforatum L.; Lavandula angustifolia Mill.; Malva sylvestris L.; Matricaria chamomilla L.; Myrtus communis L.; Origanum heracleoticum L.; Rosmarinus officinalis L. In addition to the collection of ethno-botanical information, biometric surveys, biomass determination and quality control were carried out. Two aqueous extracts were prepared with the dried samples of 6 species and tested for the anti-germination activity on Lepidium sativum L. Steam distillation was carried out for the aromatic species. The uses detected mainly concerned traditional medicine, nutrition, ritual, or religious uses. The air-dried samples showed the absence of foreign materials, mold or damage from parasites, humidity within the optimal limits for proper storage, color brilliance, intense smell. The highest essential oil yield was recorded for lavender (0.2% and 0.6% for fresh and dried inflorescences, respectively). The aromatic waters recorded acid pH values (5.76 ÷ 6.26), consistent with what is reported in the literature. The aqueous extracts of hypericum, lavender and mallow at 100 °C completely inhibited root elongation. The same lavender extract and oregano extract at room temperature showed germination inhibition on the seeds tested. The research represented a contribution to the recovery of popular knowledge of the Cilento, Vallo di Diano and Alburni National Park, to be considered as an important opportunity to develop new activities aimed at enhancing and protecting the territory, with a view to rural development. The experimental results allow us to conclude that spontaneous medicinal plants can become potential sources of local economic development with uses not only in food and phytotherapeutic uses, but also in the agricultural sector for weeds control.
Title: Development of Quality Control Parameters and Pre-clinical Safety Assessment of Asphodelus bento-rainhae and Asphodelus macrocarpus Root Tubers for Pharmaceutical Use
Authors: Maryam Malmir1; Rita Serrano1; Katelene Lima1; Maria Paula Duarte2; Isabel Moreira da Silva1; Beatriz Silva-Lima1; Manuela Caniça3; Olga Silva1*
Affiliation: 1 Research Institute for Medicines (iMed.ULisboa), Faculty of Pharmacy, Universidade de Lisboa, Av. Professor Gama Pinto, 1649-003 Lisbon, Portugal; 2 MEtRICs, Nova School of Science and Technology, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, 2829-516 Caparica, Portugal; 3 National Reference Laboratory of Antibiotic Resistances and Healthcare Associated Infections, Department of Infectious Diseases, National Institute of Health Dr. Ricardo Jorge, Av. Padre Cruz, 1649-016 Lisbon, Portugal
Abstract: Root tubers of Asphodelus bento-rainhae subsp. bento-rainhae (AbR), an endemic species with relevant interest due to conservation concerns and Asphodelus macrocarpus subsp. macrocarpus (AmR) have been traditionally used for culinary and medicinal purposes, mainly associated with skin infection and inflammation. The present study aims to establish the quality control criteria for proper characterization of dried root tubers of both species as herbal substances, together with their pre-clinical safety assessments. Botanical characterization using macroscopic and microscopic techniques and phytochemical evaluation/quantification of the main classes of secondary metabolites, including, phenolic compounds (flavonoid, anthraquinone, condensed and hydrolysable tannin) and terpenoids were performed. Additionally, in vitro genotoxicity/ mutagenicity was evaluated by Ames test. Morphological difference in development of tubercles (3.5×1 cm in AbR and 8.7×1.4 cm in AmR) and microscopically, in the arrangements and characteristics of vascular cylinder (metaxylem and protoxylems) were found. Anatomical similarities such as multiple-layered epidermis (velamen), and the cortex area with thin-walled idioblasts (134±2.9 μm, 150±27.6 μm) containing raphide crystals (37.2±14.2 μm, 87.7±15.3 μm) were observed in both species. Terpenoids (173.88±29.82, 180.55±10.57 mg OAE/ g dried weight) and condensed tannins (128.64±14.05, 108.35±20.37 mg CAE/ g dried weight) found to be the main class of constituents of AbR and AmR extracts. No genotoxicity (up to 5 mg/plate, without metabolic activation) was detected in these medicinal plants tested extracts. The obtained results will contribute to the knowledge of the value of the Portuguese flora and their future commercial cultivation and utilization as raw materials for industrial and pharmaceutical use.
Title: Isolation and biological activities of phytochemicals from the bark of Parrotiopsis jacquemontiana (Dence) Rehder
Authors: Hafiz Muhammad Umer Farooqi
Affiliation: Department of Ocean System Engineering, Jeju National University, Jeju-do, Republic of Korea
Abstract: Ethnobotanically, Parrotiopsis Jacquemontiana (Dence) Rehder is known to cure skin pathologies and is subjected to various phytochemical studies. However, the external parts of this indigenous species are never evaluated for pharmaceutical suitability. We first time studied the phytochemical potential of the bark of Parrotiopsis Jacquemontiana. The extracts were fractioned on the bases of polarity (hexane, chloroform, ethyl acetate, butanol, and water). Crude extracts, fractions, and purified constituents were subjected to bioassay screening to determine the potential activities of the secondary metabolites. All the extraction, fractionation, and purification processes of bioactive chemical compounds were carried out by repeated chromatographic separations such as thin-layer column chromatography and high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Finally, all the constituents were subjected to detailed structural studies using standard analytical techniques (FTIR, UV, EIMS, HR-EIMS, 1D & 2D-NMR, 1H-NMR, 13C-NMR, COSY HMQC, HMBC, NOESY) and evaluated for various chemical and biological studies. Additionally, the single-crystal X-Ray diffraction technique was used to determine the three-dimensional structure of complex molecules. We found that the phytochemicals isolated from Parrotiopsis Jacquemontiana have a significant potential for future pharmaceutics.