Learning outcomes of the course unit
The course aims to teach the botanical aspects of plants of pharmaceutical interest. This course is related to the teaching of Plant Biology, which precedes it, and Pharmacognosy, which follows.
To have passed Plant Biology.
Course contents summary
The subjects under study are:
- Pharmaceutical botany: a brief history.
- Importance of the knowledge of the location of segregated tissues for extraction of active ingredients.
- Secondary metabolism production of active ingredients in medicinal plants.
- The active ingredients of medicinal plants (essential oils, alkaloids, glycosides, tannins, gums, mucilage, resin, gum resin, oleoresins) and their physio-ecological significance.
- Morphological and microscopic examination of drugs: Unorganised drugs, microscopy techniques, preparation of drugs for microscopic examination and general use of reagents, dusted drugs, computer-assisted identification of dusted drugs, quantitative microscopy.
- Alternation of nuclear and generation phases.
- Distribution of sexual organs on the plant. Flowers, seeds, fruit.
- Genetic improvement of the plant (interspecies hybridization, polyploidy) and methodology (selection, biotechnology).
- Taxonomic unit and nomenclature. Systematic, taxonomy, identification.
- Classifications: descriptive, morphological & phylogenetic systems.
- General systematic framework of plants according to the classifications proposed by Engler & Diels, Takhtajan and Cronquist.
- Viruses: structure, multiplication, activity.
- Bacteria: structure and physiology; bacteria of particular interest to humans as agents of disease and producers of antibiotics.
- Characteristics of the main algal divisions: Algae of pharmaceutical interest with particular reference to Rhodophyta and Pheophyta.
- Products of pharmaceutical interest extracted from algae.
- Phylum Micota: Structure, physiology and diffusion.
Fungi as producers of antibiotics, mycosis agents, polluters of food and pharmaceutical products, producers of substances of great pharmaceutical and pharmacological interest.
Toxic and poisonous fungi.
- Lichens: introduction. Lichens of pharmaceutical interest.
- Phylum Pteridophyta:
General information on the morphology of the vegetative and reproductive parts.
Description of species of pharmaceutical interest.
- Phylum Spermatophyta:
General characteristics of Gymnosperm and Angiosperm.
Description detailed of Echinacea, Hypericum, Gingko, Harpagophytum, Azadirachta, Aronia, Melaleuca, Kava, Lapacho and Tea-Tree.
Description of the major classifications and families of pharmaceutical interest.
With regard to the study of Angiosperm, the candidate must have prepared specifically on the general characteristics of the order and family, the botanical characteristics of plants of pharmaceutical interest belonging to it, and geographical distribution as well as related drugs.
M.L. LEPORATTI, S. FODDAI, L. TOMMASINI: Testo Atlante di Anatomia Vegetale e delle Piante Officinali, Ed. Piccin, Padova.
BIDWELL: Fisiologia Vegetale, Ed. Piccin, Padova.
The exam consists of an oral interview.