News code: 228
Release date : Saturday 4 July 2015 - 9:27

Seeds and Saplings Bank Will Prevent Extinction of Medicinal Plants

Seeds and Saplings Bank Will Prevent Extinction of Medicinal Plants

The head of agriculture department of Medicinal Plants and Drugs Research Institute of Shahid Beheshti University highlighted the need for the development of Seeds and Saplings Bank of this institute and said that this bank will help prevent the extinction of medicinal plants.

Dr. Mohammad Hossein Mirjalili said, “The mission of the Seeds and Saplings Bank are to prepare seed samples, tissue culture plants and their propagation, and prepare plants for cultivation in farms and their domestication.”

Referring to the 2001 establishment of the Medicinal Plants Seeds and Saplings Bank in this institute he said that so far more than 100 endemic and native medicinal plants seeds have been collected in this bank and there is an effort to gather all the medicinal plants seeds of the country in the bank.

Mirjalili went on to say, “Some of the plant species, such as Mandragora, which was grown in the northern part of the country, have been extinct and these medicinal plants are no longer available in Iran.”

He stated that one of the main policies of the research centers and institutes should be to establish a medicinal plants seeds and saplings bank and added, “Providing suitable service to the researchers, promoting medicinal plants agriculture, keeping and caring for these plants should be among the advantages of these banks.”

Pointing out the excessive collection of some of the plant species and their likelihood of extinction, Mirjalili said, “Most of our medicinal plants are wildly grown in nature, some of which are among the endangered species due to the excessive collection.”

This academic member of Medicinal Plants and Drugs Research Institute declared that the Iranian Thymus vulgaris, Ferula gummoso, Zhumeria majdae, Ferula assa-foetida L. and some species of Satureja are among the endemic plant species of Iran and said, “Currently, people are providing these plants from the wild.”

Regarding the fact that most of the medicinal plants of the country are not domesticated he said, “Considering the temperature conditions, nutrition and suitable soil, we can domesticate these plants by making the most of the potentials of the seeds bank.”

“Some of the plant species do not exist in our country. However, key herbal medicines are produced by them. Theses species are among native plants of other countries.” Mirjalili added.

He further noted that the seeds of these plants must be purchased  and kept in this bank and added, “Unless we can have access to these medicinal plants, we are mere consumers of their medicinal products.”

 Source: IRNA

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