Alstonia boonei De Wild (Apocynaceae) – A review of its Ethnomedicinal Uses, Phytochemistry and Pharmacological Activities
Keywords:Alstonia boonei De Wild, Alstonia spp, Egbu-ora, Ahun, secondary metabolites, pharmacological activities, Apocynacae, Egbu
Alstonia boonei De Wild belongs to the family Apocynaceae. Its leaves, stem bark, root bark and sometimes, the stem latex have been traditionally used in parts of West Africa, for the management of various ailments ranging from malaria, hypertension to various forms of inflammation and cancer. It is also reputed for its use in the inducement of labour and in the management of post-partum haemorrhage. Its leaves, stem bark and root bark are rich in numerous secondary metabolites such as tannins, alkaloids, saponins, steroids, triterpenes, flavonoids, cardiac glycosides, cyanogenetic glycosides, carbohydrates and reducing sugars in various amounts. Calcium, phosphorous, iron, sodium, potassium and magnesium have also been found to be present in the plant parts. This review contains a fairly recent and distinct update on reports of the validated pharmacological activities as well as on the bioactive compounds already isolated and characterized from the leaves, stem bark ad root bark of A. boonei De Wild. It is expected that this review will provide a data base for reference and also stimulate a fresh interest in a coordinated pharmacological and phytochemical investigations into the reported folkloric uses of the various plant parts of Alstonia boonei De Wild.