Quinones and other phenolic compounds from marketed African plants
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Almost all traditional markets in Africa have sections where plants are sold for a variety of uses. A closer look at even modem shopping centers will reveal that there are thriving businesses of native plants. These uses include medicinal, culinary, fragrance, majico-medical, etc. In each region one finds indigenous plants that have emerged from the local culture and tradition as established items of commerce for that particular community. It is worth noting that many clients have established the utility and efficacy of these plants out of personal previous experiences and so simply proceed to buy them in very much the same way as one would buy common over-the-counter drugs and other personal hygiene aids. We have been studying plants that are sold in African markets. We have conducted surveys in such markets in several countries in Africa, especially in Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania (Abegaz and Demissew 1992) and Botswana. This report will deal with our recent findings in which we have identified novel anthraquinone and naphthalene glucosides from Rhammts prinoides (Rhamnaceae) and bianthraquinone pigments from Senna (Fabaceae) species.