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Open AccessArticle

An Ethnopharmacological Study of Medicinal Plants in New South Wales

Department of Chemistry and Biomolecular Sciences, Macquarie University, Australia
Department of Biological Sciences, Macquarie University, Australia
Department of Health and Chiropractic, Macquarie University, Australia
Yaegl Land Council, Maclean, Australia
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Molecules 2005, 10(10), 1252-1262;
Received: 1 December 2004 / Accepted: 15 April 2005 / Published: 30 October 2005
(This article belongs to the Special Issue 2004 RACI One-day Natural Products Group Symposium)
PDF [135 KB, uploaded 18 June 2014]


The Australian Aboriginal people have used plants as medicine and food for thousands of years, however, this traditional knowledge is documented only to a limited extent, and is in danger of being lost. The Indigenous Bioresources Research Group (IBRG) aims to help Australian Aboriginal communities to preserve their customary medicinal knowledge, and to provide information that can be used for their cultural or educational purposes, as well as for scientific advancement. This work is undertaken in close collaboration with Australian Aboriginal communities in New South Wales. The project is multidisciplinary, combining an ethnobotanical and an ethnopharmacological approach, which includes biological and chemical investigations, as well as developing best practices for protecting traditional knowledge. This paper describes the general strategy of the project as well as methods used in the ethnopharmacological study. Ethnobotanical databases are set up for each participating community. Plant material is collected, extracted, and active compounds are isolated using a bioassay-guided fractionation approach. All extracts and compounds are tested for biological activity in antimicrobial assays (disc diffusion, resazurin, fluorescein diacetate), neurological assays or anti-inflammatory assays, depending on their traditional use. View Full-Text
Keywords: Natural products; Aboriginal medicine; ethnobotany; ethnopharmacology; bioassay-guided fractionation. Natural products; Aboriginal medicine; ethnobotany; ethnopharmacology; bioassay-guided fractionation.

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Brouwer, N.; Liu, Q.; Harrington, D.; Kohen, J.; Vemulpad, S.; Jamie, J.; Randall, M.; Randall, D. An Ethnopharmacological Study of Medicinal Plants in New South Wales. Molecules 2005, 10, 1252-1262.

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