About This Special Issue
In the past, only infectious diseases have been widespread in developing countries. Now, chronic diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, respiratory ailments, cancers, inflammatory illnesses are the major cause of death and/or disability as well in developing as in developed countries.
Despite significant medical advances, the antimicrobial or antiparasitic resistance increase and drug effectiveness decrease, the neglected tropical diseases (Buruli ulcer, leishmaniases, African trypanosomiasis, schistosomiasis etc) remains a break on both economies and development, the virus emergence (EBOLA, SARS, AIDS etc.) or the re-emergence of diseases (Tuberculosis) continues to be an omnipresent threat to life.
While the health public improvment in the developing countries depend exclusively to international donators, by now, none of the major health-development funds have made any substantive or sustained effort to adress the chronic diseases.
To enable people living in these countries to take control of their own health, an adequate drug supply system has to be developed.
In such way, the importance of traditional medicine is evident since this medicine continues to be the first and most important source of medical solace for more than 80% of the populations living in Africa, Asia and South America.
During the last few decades, a great deal of interest has been given to the role of herbal remedies in the treatment of both infectious and chronic diseases. Although a series of plant species is frequently used in folk medicine for the management of a wide range of illnesses, there is a lack of scientific evidence supporting such claims for most of these natural remedies.
Having in mind that traditional medicines and plant species remain as well an important source for scientific investigations as a hidden wealth of potentially useful natural products, the search for natural plant products as alternative therapy is ongoing and must be intensified. In particular, discovery and development of effective, affordable and safe drugs is an urgent need in the developing countries. Aiming to provide an overview of the worldwide current researches on natural products remedies, this issue is focused on “Herbal remedies in the management of infectious and chronic diseases”. Thus, any results or review from biological, pharmacological, toxicological and/or clinical trial investigations on the following but not limited topics are welcome :
Antimicrobial screening of medicinal plants
Medicinal plants and antiprotozoal activity
Herbal remedies and chronic diseases
Clinical trials using medicinal plants