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Susana F.,University of Concepción | Marisol B.,University of Concepción | Marisol B.,North Dakota State University | Rosemarie W.,University of Concepción | And 5 more authors.
Industrial Crops and Products | Year: 2011

The increase of land use for crop cultivation and forest in South Central Chile, and the increasing wildcrafting of medicinal plants has resulted in a significant reduction of the plant population density of many native and endemic medicinal plants. Their cultivation and domestication is very limited, and there are no regulations or legislation for wildcrafting in Chile. The objectives of this study were to collect genetic material from five native medicinal plants (Adesmia emarginata, Buddleja globosa, Fabiana imbricata, Linum chamissonis, and Sophora macrocarpa), characterize the environmental conditions in which these grow in the Bio-Bio Region, Chile, and to determine the content of specific bioactive molecules. A maximum of 10 accessions of each species were collected in 2003, 2004, and 2005 in a longitudinal and transversal transect of the Bio-Bio Region (36°00'-38°30'S; 71°W). Data of altitude, light conditions, soil chemical and physical characteristics and associated flora of the site collection were recorded. Seed germination requirements and the content of specific bioactive molecules (flavonoids or rutin) were also determined. In general, all these species are adapted to grow in poor soils with different pH values, P and K levels, low organic matter and N content. Flavonoids were determined in both A. emarginata (0.6-1%) and B. globosa (9.7-13.9%) leaves, while rutin concentration was determined in F. imbricata leaves and stems (1.3-5.3%). Results showed great variations for the content of active principles with medicinal activity, which indicates a corresponding variation in the quality of raw materials for the pharmaceutical industry. Due to the fact that information on the domestication, propagation, cultivation and agronomic practices can ensure good pharmaceutical quality, this study provides a basis for further research on Chilean medicinal plants. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.

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