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Great Apes Plant Foods As Valuable Alternative Of Traditional Medicine In Congo Basin: The Case Of Non-Human Primate Bonobos (Pan paniscus) Diet at Lomako Fauna Reserve, Democratic Republic of the Congo
Research article
  

Great Apes Plant Foods As Valuable Alternative Of Traditional Medicine In Congo Basin: The Case Of Non-Human Primate Bonobos (Pan paniscus) Diet at Lomako Fauna Reserve, Democratic Republic of the Congo


Koto-te-Nyiwa Ngbolua1, Mathieu Bolaa Bokamba, Pius T. Mpiana, Elumba G. Ekutsu, Masengo C. Ashande, Damien S.T. Tshibangu, Virima Mudogo, Dorothée D. Tshilanda, Roger K. Kowozogono.

1Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, University of Kinshasa, P.O. Box 190 Kinshasa XI, Democratic Republic of the Congo.
2Biodiversity Team Leader, Mai-Ndombe REDD+ project, Ecosystem Restorate Associate, Wildlife Works, Inogo, Democratic Republic of the Congo.
3Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, University of Kinshasa, P.O. Box 190 Kinshasa XI, Democratic Republic of the Congo.
4Scientific Committee for Research, Conservation and the Development of Biodiversity, Faculty of Science, University of Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo.
5ISP Yakoma, District of Nord Ubangi, Province of Equateur, Democratic Republic of the Congo.


Corresponding author :

Dr. Koto-te-Nyiwa Ngbolua,
Tel.: +243 81 68 79 527,
Email:

Received: February 19, 2015,   Accepted: May 4, 2015,   Published:


Abstract:

Great apes are a good model for human pathology and physiology. Great apes eat several plant species claimed by traditional healers to treat various ailments in folk medicine. Some of the items consumed by great apes have low nutritional value suggesting that health might be improved or regulated by such ingestion as previously postulated. Among the inventoried plant species known to be eaten by bonobos at Lomako Fauna Reserve, at least nine (30%) are used in African Traditional Medicine and scientifically validated as antisickling, anti-parasitic, anticonvulsant, analgesic, vasorelaxant, antimicrobial or hepato-protecting medicinal plants. Zoo-pharmacognosy approach may therefore serve as a new complementary/alternative of ethno-pharmacology method in selecting plants for biopharmaceutical research, especially as source of antisickling new hits. The fact that the permanent access of these vegetarian primates to plants as preventive medication in order to maintain a low level of pathogens and a sub-clinical health status, indicate that bonobos plant foods could serve as a valuable alternative of traditional medicines of pharmacological relevance for human health in Congo basin. It is therefore suggested that great apes plant foods could protect human sickle erythrocyte against hemolysis by inhibiting the polymerization of sickle hemoglobin and radical oxygen species formation within sickle erythrocyte as it does for Plasmodium falciparum infected erythrocytes in bonobos.


Keywords: Bonobos, Zoo-pharmacognosy, Pharmacophagy, Medicinal foods, Folk medicine, Democratic Republic of the Congo.


Citation:

Koto-te-Nyiwa Ngbolua et al.. (2015). Great Apes Plant Foods As Valuable Alternative Of Traditional Medicine In Congo Basin: The Case Of Non-Human Primate Bonobos (Pan paniscus) Diet at Lomako Fauna Reserve, Democratic Republic of the Congo. J. of Advanced Botany and Zoology, V3I1. DOI: 10.15297/JABZ.V3I1.01


Copyright:

© 2015 Koto-te-Nyiwa Ngbolua. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


      
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      Journal of Advanced Botany and Zoology