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Painting of a bright red flower and stem.

Papaver orientale.

From William Curtis' Botanical Magazine. National Agricultural Library Special Collections, ARS, USDA.

Medicinal Plants

Tracer Bullet 04-2

of Congress Standard Disclaimer


Plants continue to be a major source of medicines, as they have been throughout human history. Some medicinal plants, such as the opium poppy, have long been recognized and widely used, while others, such as the Pacific yew, the original source for the cancer drug, Taxol, are relatively new arrivals to mainstream medicine. In addition to providing the basis for between 30 and 40 percent of today’s conventional drugs, the medicinal and curative properties of various plants are also employed in herbal supplements, botanicals, nutraceuticals and teas.

Drug discovery, ethnobotany, and traditional and indigenous medicines have long been basic to medicinal plant research. As new uses for medicinal plants have been discovered and popularized, sustainability has become increasingly an issue; concern over the growth in biopiracy goes hand in hand with the critical need for conservation of both species and habitat.

This update of an earlier Tracer Bullet (TB 91-8), provides references to published materials on plants containing substances of medicinal value. Publications issued since 1990, as well as those that researchers have found particularly useful in their work over the years, are emphasized. This Tracer Bullet has been compiled to assist researchers in navigating the databases, electronic resources and print materials related to medicinal plants and to locate relevant materials in the Library’s collections. Lists of other agencies, institutions, and organizations are provided as starting points for further study. Not intended to be a comprehensive bibliography, this guide is designed--as the name of the series implies--to put the reader “on target.”



Balick, Michael J., and Paul Alan Cox. Plants that heal. In their Plants, people, and culture: the science of ethnobotany. New York, Scientific American Library, c1996. p. 25-61.
   GN476.73.B35 1996 <SciRR>

Shulz, Volker, Rudolf Hänsel, and Mark Blumenthal. Medicinal plants, phytomedicines, and phytotherapy. In their Rational phytotherapy: a physicians’ guide to herbal medicine. 4th ed. Berlin, New York, Springer, 2001. p. 1-39.
   RM666.H33S3813 2001 <SciRR>

Skidmore-Roth, Linda. Introduction. In her Mosby’s handbook of herbs & natural supplements. 2nd ed. St. Louis, Mosby, c2004. p. ix-xxii.
   RM666.H33S575 2004 <SciRR>



Subject headings used by the Library of Congress, under which books on medicinal plants can be located, include the following:

Highly Relevant








Lewis, Walter Hepworth, and Memory P.F. Elvin-Lewis. Medical botany: plants affecting human health. 2nd ed. Hoboken, NJ, J. Wiley, c2003. 812 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RS164.L475 2003 <SciRR>

Ross, Ivan A. Medicinal plants of the world: chemical constituents, traditional and modern medicinal uses. 2nd ed. Totowa, NJ, Humana Press, 2003. 2 v.
   Includes bibliographies.
   R676 2003 <SciRR>

Stuart, David C. Dangerous garden: the quest for plants to change our lives. Cambridge, MA, Harvard University Press, 2004. 208 p.
   Bibliography: p. 204.
   QK99.A1S79 2004

Sumner, Judith. The natural history of medicinal plants. Portland, OR, Timber Press, c2000. 235 p.    Includes bibliographies.
   QK99QK99.A1S86 2000 <SciRR>

Van Wyk, Ben-Erik, and Michael Wink. Medicinal plants of the world: an illustrated scientific guide to important medicinal plants and their uses. Portland, OR, Timber Press, 2004. 480 p.
   Bibliography: p. 442-444
   RS164.V295 2004 <SciRR>.



Drug Discovery

Artuso, Anthony. Drugs of natural origin: economic and policy aspects of discovery, development, and marketing. New York, Pharmaceutical Products Press, c1997. 201 p.
   Bibliography: p. 183-191.
   RS160.A78 1997

The Discovery of natural products with therapeutic potential. Edited by Vincent P. Gullo. Boston, Butterworth-Heinemann, c1994. 461 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RS160.D58 1994

Drug discovery from nature. Edited by S. Grabley and R. Thiericke. Berlin, New York, Springer, c1999. 347 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RS160.D84 1999 <SciRR>

Ethnomedicine and drug discovery. Edited by Maurice M. Iwu and Jackie C. Wooten. Amsterdam, New York, Elsevier, 2002. 330 p. (Advances in phytomedicine series, v. 1)
   Includes bibliographies.
   S160.E847 2002 <SciRR>

Plotkin, Mark J. Medicine quest: in search of nature’s healing secrets. New York, Viking, 2000. 224 p.    Bibliography: p. 209-214.
   RS160.P57 2000

The Role of natural products in drug discovery. J. Mulzer and R. Bohlmann, editors. Berlin, New York, Springer, c2000. 348 p. (Ernst Schering Research Foundation workshop, 32)
   Includes bibliographies.
   RS160.R65 2000

Economic Botany

Levetin, Estelle, and Karen McMahon. Plants and society. 3rd ed. New York, McGraw-Hill, c2003. 508 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   QK47.L48 2003 <SciRR>

Simpson, Beryl Brintnall, and Molly Connor Ogorzaly. Economic botany: plants in our world. 3rd ed. Boston, McGraw-Hill, c2001. 529 p.
   Bibliography: p. 479-485.
   SB108.U5S56 2001 <SciRR>

Wickens, G. E. Economic botany: principles and practices. Dordrecht, Boston, Kluwer Academic, c2001. 535 p.
   Bibliography: p. 423-458.
   SB107.W47 2001 <SciRR>

Ethnobotany, Indigenous and Traditional Medicines

Cotton, C. M. Ethnobotany: principles and applications. Chichester, Eng., New York, John Wiley & Sons, c1996. 424 p.
   Bibliography: p. 375-399.
   GN476.73.C67 1996 <SciRR>

Cunningham, Anthony B. Applied ethnobotany: people, wild plant use, and conservation. London, Earthscan, 2001. 300 p.
   Bibliography: p. 278-294.
   QK86.5.C85 2001 <SciRR>

Duffield, Graham. Intellectual property, biogenetic resources, and traditional knowledge. London, Sterling VA, Earthscan, 2004. 258 p.
   Bibliography: p. 235-251.
   SB123.3.D879 2004

Ethnobotany: a reader. Edited by Paul E. Minnis. Norman, University of Oklahoma Press, c2000. 327 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   GN476.73.E83 2000

Ethnobotany: evolution of a discipline. Edited by Richard Evans Schultes and Siri von Reis. Portland, OR, Dioscorides Press, c1995. 414 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   GN476.73.E84 1995 <SciRR>

Khare, C. P. Encyclopedia of Indian medicinal plants: rational Western therapy, Ayurvedic and other traditional usage, botany. Berlin, New York, Springer, c2004. 523 p.
   RS180.I3K39 2004

Moerman, Daniel E. Native American ethnobotany. Portland, OR, Timber Press, c1998. 927 p.
   Bibliography: p. 619-623.
   E98.B7M66 1998 <SciRR>

Neuwinger, Hans Dieter. African traditional medicine: a dictionary of plant use and applications. Stuttgart, Medpharm Scientific Publishers, 2000. 589 p.
   Bibliography: p. 575-580.
   RS181.N48 2000 <SciRR>

Herbal Medicine

The ABC clinical guide to herbs. Edited by Mark Blumenthal. Austin, TX, American Botanical Council, 2003. 480 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RM666.H33A175 2003 <SciRR>

The Complete German Commission E monographs: therapeutic guide to herbal medicines. Senior editor, Mark Blumenthal, with Werner R. Busse and others. Austin, TX, American Botanical Council; Boston, Integrative Medicine Communications, 1998. 685 p.
   Bibliography: p. 641.
   RM666.H33C67 1998 <SciRR>

Herbal companion to AHFS DI. Bethesda, MD, American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, c2000. 178 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RM666.H33H46 2000

Herbal medicinals: a clinician’s guide. Edited by Lucinda G. Miller and Wallace J. Murray. New York, Pharmaceutical Products Press, c1998. 382 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   M666.H33H465 1998 <SciRR>

Libster, Martha. Delmar’s integrative herb guide for nurses. With a foreword by James A. Duke. Albany, NY, Delmar/Thomson Learning, c2002. 931 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RM666.H33L634 2002

Rotblatt, Michael, and Irwin Ziment. Evidence-based herbal medicine. Philadelphia, Hanley & Belfus, c2002. 464 p.    Includes bibliographies.
   RM666.H33R683 2001

Weiss, R. F., and Volker Fintelmann. Herbal medicine. 2nd ed. rev. Stuttgart, New York, Thieme, 2000. 438 p.    Translation of Lehrbuch der phytotherapie.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RM666.H33W4443 2000

Medicinal Plants: Resources, Biodiversity and Conservation

Breeding research on aromatic and medicinal plants. Christopher B. Johnson and Chlodwig Franz, editors. New York, Haworth Herbal Press, c2002. 435 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   SB301.B7 2002

Lange, Dagmar. Europe’s medicinal and aromatic plants: their use, trade and conservation. Cambridge, Eng., Traffic International, c1998. 77 p.
   Bibliography: p. 73-77.
   QK99.E85L36 1998

Medicinal resources of the tropical forest: biodiversity and its importance to human health. Edited by Michael J. Balick, Elaine Elisabetsky, and Sarah A. Laird. New York, Columbia University Press, c1996. 440 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RS164.M377 1999 <SciRR>

Planting the future: saving our medicinal herbs. Edited by Rosemary Gladstar and Pamela Hirsch. Rochester, VT, Healing Arts Press, c2000. 310 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   SB293.P53 2000

Plant resources of South-East Asia. Bogor, ESCAP CGPRT Centre, 1990-2002.
   SB108.A83P53 1990, no. 12, pt. 1-2.
   See especially no. 12, Medicinal and poisonous plants, edited by L. S. Padua, N. Bunyapraphatsara and R. H. M. J. Lemmons: pt. 1-2.

Roth, Ingrid, and Helga Lindorf. South American medicinal plants: botany, remedial properties, and general use. Berlin, New York, Springer, c2002. 492 p.
   Bibliography: p. 469-481.
   RS174.S68 2002 <SciRR>

Schultes, Richard Evans, and Robert F. Rauffauf. The healing forest: medicinal and toxic plants of the northwest Amazonia. Portland, OR, Dioscorides Press, c1990. 484 p.
   (Historical, ethno-& economic botany series, v. 2)
   Bibliography: p. 475-476.
   QK99.A47S38 1990 <SciRR>

Tibetan medicinal plants. Edited by Christa Kletter and Monika Kriechbaum. Boca Raton, FL, CRC Press/Medpharm, 2001. 383 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   R603.T5T46 2001 <SciRR>

Phytochemistry, Pharmacognosy and Pharmaceuticals

Bioactive compounds from natural sources: isolation, characterisation, and biological properties. Edited by Corrado Tringali. London, New York, Taylor & Francis, 2001. 693 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RS160.B55 2001 <SciRR>

Biologically active natural products: pharmaceuticals. Edited by Stephen J. Cutler and Horace G. Cutler. Boca Raton, FL, CRC Press, c2000. 277 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RS160.B57 2000

Dewick, Paul M. Medicinal natural products: a biosynthetic approach. 2nd ed. Chichester, Eng., New York, Wiley, c2002. 507 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RS160.D48 2002

Ebadi, Manuchair S. Pharmacodynamic basis of herbal medicine. Boca Raton, FL, CRC Press, c2002. 726 p.
   Bibliography: p. 697-701.
   RM666.H33E23 2002 <SciRR>

Evans, William Charles. Trease and Evans’ pharmacognosy. 15th rev. ed. Edinburgh, New York, W. B. Saunders, 2002. 585 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RS160.T75 2002 <SciRR>

Huang, K. C. The pharmacology of Chinese herbs. 2nd ed. Boca Raton, FL, CRC Press, c1999. 512 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RM666.H33H83 1999 <SciRR>

Li, Thomas S. C. Chinese and related North American herbs: phtyopharmacology and therapeutic values. Boca Raton, FL, CRC Press, c2002. 598 p.
   RS164.L5645 2002 <SciRR>

Li, Thomas S. C. Medicinal plants: culture, utilization, and phytopharmacology. Lancaster, PA, Technomic Pub. Co., 2000. 517 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RS164.L565 2000

Natural medicines comprehensive database. 1999- By the editors of Pharmacist’s letter, Prescriber’s letter. Stockton, CA, Therapeutic Research Faculty.
   Science RR has most recent edition.
   RM258.5.N38 <SciRR>

Polya, Gideon Maxwell. Biochemical targets of plant bioactive compounds: a pharmacological reference guide to sites of action and biological effects. London, New York, Taylor & Francis, 2003. 847 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RS164.P766 2003 <SciRR>

Williamson, Elizabeth M., D. T. Okpako, and Fred J. Evans. Selection, preparation, and pharmacological evaluation of plant material. Chichester, Eng., New York, J. Wiley & Sons, c1996. 228 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RS164.W55 1996

Phytocosmetics, Botanicals, Teas and Supplements

A-Z guide to drug-herb-vitamin interactions: how to improve your health and avoid problems when using common medications and natural supplements together. Edited by Schuyler W. Lininger, and others. Rocklin, CA, Prima Health, 1999. 436 p.
   Bibliography: p. 341-412.
   RM666.H33A16 1999 <SciRR>

D’Amelio, Frank S. Botanicals: a phytocosmetic desk reference. Boca Raton, FL, CRC Press, c1999. 361 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RS164.D274 1999 <SciRR>

Fugh-Berman, Adriane. The 5-minute herb & dietary supplement consult. Philadelphia, Lippincott & Williams, c2003. 475 p.
   Bibliography: p. 354-426.
   RM666.H33F835 2003 <SciRR>

Herbs, botanicals & teas. Edited by G. Mazza and B. D. Oomah. Lancaster, PA, Technomic Publishing Co., Inc., 2000. 416 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RS164.H385 2000 <SciRR>

Wulff-Tilford, Mary, and Gregory L. Tilford. All you ever wanted to know about herbs for pets. Irvine, CA, BowTie Press, 1999. 416 p.
   Bibliography: p. 402-407.
   SF745.5.W86 1999 <SciRR>

Selected Medical Plants

Cannabis and cannabinoids: pharmacology, toxicology, and therapeutic potential. Edited by Franjo Grotenhermen and Ethan Russo. New York, Haworth Integrative Healing Press, c2002. 439 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RM666.C266C667 2002

Hypericum: the genus Hypericum. Edited by E. Ernst. London, New York, Taylor & Francis, 2003. 241 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RS165.H95H97 2003 <SciRR>

Plants that fight cancer. Edited by Spiridon E. Kintzios and Maria G. Baberaki. Boca Raton, FL, CRC Press, c2004. 296 p.
   Bibliography: p. 274-287.
   RC271.H47P56 2004 <SciRR>

Poppy: the genus Papaver. Edited by Jeno Bernáth. Amsterdam, Harwood Academic Publishers, c1998. 352 p. Medicinal and aromatic plants--industrial profiles, 1027-4502, v. 3.
   Includes bibliographies.
   SB295.O65P66 1998 <SciRR>

WHOmonographs on selected medicinal plants. Geneva, World Health Organization, 1999-2002. 2 v.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RS164.W445 1999 <SciRR>



Capasso, Francesco, and others. Phytotherapy: a quick reference to herbal medicine. Berlin, New York, Springer, c2003. 424 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RM666.H33P497 2003 <SciRR>

Castner, James L., S. Lee Timme, and James A. Duke. A field guide to medicinal and useful plants of the Upper Amazon. Gainesville, FL, Feline Press, c1998. 154 p.
   Bibliography: p. 135-140.
   QK99.A432C37 1998 <SciRR>

Chevallier, Andrew. Natural health encyclopedia of herbal medicine. 2nd American ed. New York, DK Pub. Inc., c2000. 336 p.
   RS164.C4437 2000 <SciRR>

Duke, James A., and others. Handbook of medicinal herbs. 2nd ed. Boca Raton, FL, CRC Press, c2002. 870 p.
   Bibliography: p. 821-827.
   QK99.A1D83 2002 <SciRR>

Foster, Steven, and James A. Duke. A field guide to medicinal plants and herbs of eastern and central North America. 2nd ed. Boston, Houghton Mifflin Co., 2000. 411 p.
   Sponsored by the National Audubon Society, the National Wildlife Federation, and the Roger Tory Peterson Institute.
   Bibliography: p. 362-364.
   QK99.U6F68 1999 <SciRR>

Foster, Steven, and Christopher Hobbs. A field guide to Western medicinal plants and herbs. Boston, Houghton Mifflin Co., 2002. 442 p.    Bibliography: p. 398-402.
   Sponsored by the National Wildlife Federation and the Roger Tory Peterson Institute.
   QK99.U6F684 2002

Johnson, Timothy. CRC ethnobotany desk reference. Boca Raton, FL, CRC Press, c1999. 1213 p.
   Bibliography: p. 1213.
   GN476.73.J66 1999 <SciRR>

Peirce, Andrea. The American Pharmaceutical Association practical guide to natural medicines. New York, Morrow, c1999. 728 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RM666.H33P45 1999 <SciRR>

Phytochemical dictionary: a handbook of bioactive compounds from plants. 2nd ed. Edited by Jeffrey B. Harborne, Herbert Baxter, and Gerard P. Moss. London, Philadelphia, Taylor & Francis, c1999.
   Includes bibliographies.
   QK898.B54P48 1999 <SciRR>

Phytotherapy: a quick reference to herbal medicine. Edited by Francesco Capasso and others. Berlin, New York, Springer-Verlag, c2003. 424 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   RM666.H33P497 2003 <SciRR>

Professional’s handbook of complementary & alternative medicines. c1999- Springhouse, PA, Springhouse Corporation.
   RM666.H33P76 2004 <SciRR>
   Science RR has most recent edition.

Torkelson, Anthony R. The cross name index to medicinal plants. Boca Raton, FL, CRC Press, c1996-c1999. 4 v.
   Includes bibliographies
   QK99.A1T65 1996 <SciRR>



International Congress of Ethnobiology (7th, Athens, GA, 2000). Ethnobiology and biocultural diversity: proceedings of the Seventh International Congress of Ethnobiology. John R. Stepp and others, editors. Athens, GA, International Society of Ethnobiology, distributed by the University of Georgia Press, c2002. 720 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   GN476.7.I68 2000

Joint Conference of the Society for Economic Botany and the International Society for Ethnopharmacology (London, England, 1996). Plants for food and medicine: proceedings of the joint conference of the Society for Economic Botany and the International Society for Ethnopharmacology, London, 1-6 July 1996. N. L. Etkin, and others, editors. Kew, Eng., Royal Botanic Gardens, 1998. 438 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   SB107.J65 1996

Phytomedicines of Europe: chemistry and biological activity. Edited by Larry D. Lawson and Rudolf Bauer. Washington, American Chemical Society, 1998. 324 p.
   Includes bibliographies.
   212th ACS National Meeting, Orlando, FL, August 25-29, 1996, Division of
Agricultural and Food Chemistry.
   RM666.H33P49 1998

Proceedings of the International Expert Meeting organized by the Forest Products Division, FAO Forestry Department, and the FAO Regional Office for the Near East (Cairo, Egypt, May 19-21, 1997). Medicinal, culinary and aromatic plants in the Near East. Cairo, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 1999.
   Includes bibliographies.
   Available online at

World Congress on Medicinal and Aromatic Plants for Human Welfare (2nd, Mendoza, Argentina, 1997). Second World Congress on Medicinal and Aromatic Plants for Human Welfare: WOCMAP-2: agricultural production, post-harvest techniques, biotechnology. Mendoza, Argentina, 10-15 Nov. 1997. G. Giberti, and others, editors. International Council for Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (ICMAP), International Society for Horticultural Science (ISHS), Sociedad Argentina para la Investigación de Productos Aromáticos (SAIPA), organizers. Wageningen, Netherlands, Wageningen Academic Press, 1999. 408 p. (Acta horticulturae, no. 502)
   Includes bibliographies.
   SB293.W67 1997



Dissertations can be identified by using online resources or print indexes located in the Main Reading Room. Consult any reference librarian about options. Some dissertations may be available in full text through electronic resources on public terminals at the Library of Congress.



Chandrasekhara Behr, Diji. Economic, institutional, and social learning dimensions of sustainable medicinal plant production in Kerala, India. Ann Arbor, MI, University Microfilms, 2004. 281 p.
   UMI Microfiche AAT3123896 <MicRR>
   Thesis (doctoral)--Cornell University, 2004.

Hamby, Erin Brooke. The roots of healing: archaeological and historical investigations of African-American herbal medicine. Ann Arbor, MI, UMI Microfilms, 2004. 177 p.
   UMI Microfiche AAT3130157 <MicRR>
   Thesis (doctoral)--The University of Tennessee, 2004.

Mouhajir, Fatima. Medicinal plants used by Berber and Arab peoples of Morocco: ethnopharmacology and phytochemistry. Ann Arbor, MI, University Microfilms, 2002. 228 p.
   UMI Microfiche AATNQ73218 <MicRR>
   Thesis (doctoral)--The University of British Columbia, 2002.

Ososki, Andreana L. Ethnobotany of rural and urban Dominican Republic: medicinal plants, women, and health. Ann Arbor, MI, University Microfilms, 2004. 470 p.
   UMI Microfiche AAT3127907 <MicRR>
   Thesis (doctoral)--City University of New York, 2004.



Abstracting and Indexing Services that index relevant journal articles and other types of literature are listed below. Some suggested terms for searching are “Medicinal Plants,” “Ethnobotany,” “Biodiversity,” or more specific headings, depending upon the topic of interest. Many of the titles may now be available in electronic format. Consult a reference librarian for the location and format of abstracting and indexing services in the Science Reading Room

   Electronic Format

Bibliography of Agriculture, AGRICOLA (1943-)
   Z5073.U572 <SciRR A&I> and Electronic Format

Biological Abstracts, BIOSIS (1927-)
   QH301.B37 <SciRR A&I>

Biological and Agricultural Index, BioAg Index (1916-)
   Z5073.A46 <SciRR A&I> and Electronic Format
   Online in LC: First Search's OCLC

BioMed Central
   Electronic Format
   Online in LC:

Cumulated Index Medicus, Medline, PubMed (1960-)
   Z6660.I422 <SciRR A&I> and Electronic Format

   Electronic Format

General Science Abstracts (1978-)
   Z7401.G46 <SciRR A&I> and Electronic Format

GEOBASE (1980- )
   Electronic Format

   Electronic Format
   Online in LC: Alternative Medicine Foundation

Readers’ Guide to Periodical Literature (1900-)
   AI3.R48 <BusRR> and Electronic Format



Journals that often contain relevant articles on medicinal plants include the following:

Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics RM1.C55
Drug Discovery Today (Newspaper & Current Periodical RR, current issues only.)
Economic and Medicinal Plant Research RS164.E27
HerbalGram RS164.H375
Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine R733.J67
Journal of Ethnopharmacology (Newspaper & Current Periodical RR, current issues only)
Journal of Herbs, Spices, and Medicinal Plants SB351.H5J68
Journal of Herbal Pharmacotherapy RM666.H33J68
Journal of Medicinal Food RM214.J593
Journal of Natural Products QH1.L94
(Science RR has most current issue only)
Pharmaceutical Biology RS160.I58
Phytochemistry QK861.P45
Phytomedicine: International Journal of Phytotherapy and Phytopharmacology RM666.H33 P488
Planta Medica RS164.P7
The Review of Natural Products QK99.A1R47 <SciRR>
South African Journal of Botany QK396.S67



Bent, Stephen, and Richard Ko. Commonly used herbal remedies in the United States: a review. American journal of medicine, v. 116, Apr.1, 2004: 478-485.

Boyum, F. F., and others. Composition and anti-plasmodial activities of essential oils from some Cameroonian medicinal plants. Phytochemistry, v. 64, Dec. 2003:1269-1275.

Coley, Phyllis D. Using ecological criteria to design plant collection strategies for drug discovery. Frontiers in ecology and the environment, v. 1, Oct. 2003: 421-428.

Deng, Yu-Cheng, and others. Studies on the cultivation and uses of evening primrose (Oenothera spp.) in China. Economic botany, v. 55, Jan./Mar. 2001: 83-92.

Flannery, Michael A. From Rudbeckia to Echinacea: the emergence of the purple cone-flower in modern therapeutics. Pharmacy in history, v. 41, no. 2, 1999: 52-59.

Ghazanfar, S. A. Applied ethnobotany: people, wild plant use and conservation. Oryx, v. 35, July 2001: 269-270.

Goeschi, Timo. Stakes in the evolutionary race: the economic value of plants for medicinal applications. Journal of herbs, spices & medicinal plants, v. 9, no. 4, 2002: 373-388.

Jones, K. Review of sangre de drago (Croton lechleri), a South American tree sap in the treatment of diarrhea inflammation, insect bites, viral infections, and wounds: traditional uses to clinical research. Journal of alternative and complementary medicine, v. 9, Dec. 2003: 877-896.

Lewis, Walter H. Pharmaceutical discoveries based on ethnomedicinal plants: 1985 to 2000 and beyond. Economic botany, v. 57, spring 2003: 126-134.

Lin, W. Y., and others. Anti-platelet aggregation and chemical constituents from the rhizome of Gynura japonica. Planta medica, v. 69, Aug. 2003: 757-764.

Morris, Charles A. Internet marketing of herbal products. JAMA, v. 290, Sept. 17, 2003: 1505-1509.

Nelson, R. FDA issues alert on ephedra supplements in the USA. Lancet, v. 363, Jan. 10, 2004: 135.

Perez-Giraldo, C., and others. Invitro activity of allicin against Staphylococcus epidermis and influence of subinhibitory concentrations on biofilm formation. Journal of applied microbiology, v. 95, Oct. 2003: 709-711.

Sarker, S. D., and L. Nahar. Natural medicine: the genus Angelica. Current medicinal chemistry, v. 11, June 2004: 1479-1501.

Seth, S. D., and Bhawana Sharma. Medicinal plants in India. The Indian journal of medical research, v. 120, July 2004: 9-12.

Shanley, Patricia, and Leda Luz. The impacts of forest degradation on medicinal plant use and implications for health care in Eastern Amazonia. BioScience, v. 53, June 2003: 573-585.

Shao, Bao-Mel, and others. A study of the immune receptors for polysaccharides from the roots of Astragalus membranaceus, a Chinese medicinal herb. Biochemical and biophysical research communications, v. 329, Aug. 6, 2004: 1103-1111.

Update on black cohosh for hot flashes. Harvard women’s health watch, v. 11, Jan. 2004: 2-3.
   Current issues only

Vandebroek, Ina, and others. A comparison of traditional healers’ medicinal plant knowledge in the Bolivian Andes and Amazon. Social science & medicine, v. 59, Aug. 2004: 837-849.

Wellbery, Caroline. Echinacea for respiratory infections in children. American family physician, v. 70, July 1, 2004: 175.



Selected materials available in the Science Reading Room pamphlet boxes include the following:

Akpaja, Emmanuel O., and others. Ethnomycology and usage of edible and medicinal mushrooms among the Igbo people of Nigeria. International journal of medicinal mushrooms, v. 5, issue 3, 2003: 313-320.

Altshul, Sara. Artichoke quells indigestion. Prevention, v. 56, June 2004: 113.

Bailey, David C., and George C. Dresser. Natural products and adverse drug interactions. Canadian Medical Association journal, v. 170, May 11, 2004: 1531-1532.

Edwards, Rob. No remedy in sight for herbal ransack. New scientist, v. 181, Jan. 10, 2004: 10-11.

Hamilton, Alan C. Medicinal plants, conservation and livelihoods. Biodiversity and conservation, v. 13, July 2004: 1477-1517.

Jere-Malanda, Regina. Biopiracy: Neem, the wonder tree. New African, no. 424, Dec. 2003: 18.

Khan, T. J., Anil K. Dular, and Deepika M. Solomon. Biodiversity conservation in the Thar Desert, with emphasis on endemic and medicinal plants. The Environmentalist, v. 23, June 2003: 137-144.

Kilham, Chris. The herbal future. Nutraceuticals world, v. 20, July/Aug. 2004: 68-72.

Njoroge, N., and others. Utilisation of weed species as sources of traditional medicines in Kenya. Lyonia, v. 7, no. 2, 2004: 67-84.
   Also available online at:

Northridge, Mary E., and Richard Mack. Integrating ethnomedicine into public health. American journal of public health, v. 92, Oct. 2002: 1561.

Yvinskas, Katherine. Conservation of native medicinal plants. The Herbarist, no. 66, 2000: 52-55.



Associations, Societies and Agencies

American Society of Pharmacognosy
Professional society of pharmacognosists and others interested in the plant sciences and natural products.

The Center for Complementary & Alternative Pharmacotherapy (CCAP)
CCAP is affiliated with the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences.

Green Medicine
Home of the Medicinal Plants Working Group.

Herbal Research Foundation
Supports research on chemistry, pharmacology and use of herbal folk medicines, teas, and botanical products.
4140 15th St.
Boulder, CO 80304

The Herb Society of America
Concerned with the cultivation of herbs and with the study of their history and uses.

The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM)
NCCAM supports various research projects on botanicals, including the Arizona Center for Phytomedicine Research, and centers at University of Chicago, UCLA, and Purdue University.
National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Bethesda, MD 20892

Non-Wood Forest Products (NWFP)
NWFP is a program of the Forestry division of the United Nations’ FAO. The site posts research reports, publications, news, and includes links to current guidelines for global sustainable use of medicinal plants.

Society for Economic Botany
The Society encourages scientific research, education, and related activities on the past, present, and future uses of plants, and the relationship between plants and people.

Society for Medicinal Plant Research
An international society for scientific research, which produces Planta Medica.
Gesellschaft für Arzneipflanzenforschung
Emmeringerstr. 11 D - 82275 Emmering, Germany

United Plant Savers
The Plant Savers’ goal is to protect native medicinal plants of the U.S. and Canada.

Veterinary Botanical Medical Association
Dedicated to developing responsible herbal practice for animals.


Andean Botanical Information System
Provides information from floristic and systematic investigations of the flowering plants (phanerogams) of Andean South America.

Dr. Duke’s Phytochemical and Ethnobotanical Databases

International bibliographic information on dietary supplements database from the Office of Dietary Supplements at NIH and the National Agricultural Library.

Native American EthnoBotany
The University of Michigan’s Moerman database includes food, drugs, dyes, and fibers.

Prelude Medicinal Plants Database
For traditional veterinarian and human medicines in sub-Saharan Africa.

SEPASAL, Kew Centre for Economic Botany
Survey of economic plants for arid and semi-arid lands.

TCM Databases Online
Traditional Chinese Medicine databases.

Searchable archive of traditional and indigenous knowledge from the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Also has updates on biopiracy issues.

Tropical Plant Database
Tropical plants of the Amazon.

USDA PLANTS Database, provides standardized information about the vascular plants, mosses, liverworts, hornworts, and lichens of the U.S. and its territories.

WHOLIS (World Health Organization Library)
The World Health Organization library database available on the web, indexes all WHO publications from 1948 onwards and articles from WHO-produced journals and technical documents from 1985 to the present.

This site provides access to the Missouri Botanical Garden’s VAST (VAScular Tropicos) nomenclatural database and associated authority files.

Libraries, Museums, Botanical Gardens and Arboreta

Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum
Research and Conservation Department
2021 N. Kinney Rd.
Tucson, AZ 85743

Harvard University Herbaria: Botany Libraries
22 Divinity Ave.
Cambridge, MA 02138

Lyon Arboretum
University of Hawaii at Manoa
Research in ethnobotany, tropical forest ecology and conservation, seed ecology.

Lloyd Library and Museum
The Lloyd Library specializes in botanical, medical, pharmaceutical, and scientific books and periodicals.
917 Plum Street
Cincinnati, OH 45202

National Agricultural Library (NAL)
10301 Baltimore Ave.
Beltsville, MD 20705

National Tropical Botanical Garden (NTBG)
Dedicated to conserving tropical plant diversity, particularly rare and endangered species.
3530 Papalina Road
Kalaheo, HI 96741

New York Botanical Garden Institute of Economic Botany (IEB)
Research in economic botany and ethnobotany.
Bronx River Pkwy. at Fordham Road
Bronx, NY 104581

Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden Library
Subject specialities include the ethnobotany of California Indians.
1500 N. College Ave.
Claremont, CA 91711

Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Centre for Economic Botany
Research on economic botany, including authentication of Chinese medicinal plants.
Richmond, Surrey
TW9 3AB, United Kingdom

University of Washington Medicinal Herb Garden
The site includes images of herbs indexed by both common and botanical names.
Botany Department, University of Washington
Box 355325
Seattle, WA 98195-5325

Wellcome Library
The library’s goal is to foster an understanding of medicine, its history and its impact in society.
210 Euston Rd.
London NW1 2BE, United Kingdom


Agribusiness in Sustainable Natural African Plant Products (ASNAPP)
The Web site of this co-funded project from US-AID includes a plant library and project news.

American Botanical Council
Publishes HerbalGram.

Documenting the American South
Resources of the Southern Fields and Forests, Medical, Economical, and Agricultural. Being also a Medical Botany of the Confederate States; with Practical Information on the Useful Properties of the Trees, Plants, and Shrubs, by Francis Peyre Porcher., 1863.

Green Medicine
From the Medicinal Plant Working Group of the Plant Conservation Alliance.

A Guide to Medicinal and Aromatic Plants
Sponsored by the Center for New Crops and Plant Products at Purdue, this guide includes links to several databases, guides, directories, and the NewCROP server for new and alternative crop information.

Harvesting Drugs From Medicinal Plants
An article from the Agricultural Research Service of the USDA.

Medicinal and Aromatic Plants Program in Asia
From Canada’s International Development Research Centre.

Medicinal Plants for Livestock
These pages from Cornell University examine the safety and efficacy of medicinal plant use for livestock.

Medicinal Plants Network
MedPlant is a global network whose members are committed to the sustainable and socially equitable use of medicinal plants.

Memorial Sloan Kettering Information Resource: Herbs, Botanicals and Other Products
This site specializes in evidence-based information on herbs, botanicals, vitamins, and other supplements.

Mini-Course in Medical Botany
An informative compilation from Dr. James Duke, the noted ethnobotanist.

Non Timber Forest Products
Links from the Special Forest Products Program at Virginia Tech .

Plants of the Machiguenga
A neurologist’s record of Peruvian rain forest plants.

Southwest School of Botanical Medicine Links
An eclectic collection of links and resources, including ones of historical interest.

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