PHYTO-MEDICINAL STUDIES IN DISTRICT LOWER DIR HINDUKUSH RANGE KHYBER PAKHTUNKHWA PAKISTAN
Medicinal plants play a promising role in the primary health care services in Pakistan and elsewhere in the world as their usage in treatment of ailments as well as an important part of the cultural heritage. The aim of this research was to document the indigenous knowledge of the local medicinal plants and their remedies used by the inhabitants of District Lower Dir, Pakistan. The study was conducted in August 2016-April 2017. The Ethno medicinal data were availed from 87 informants by conducting semi-structured interviews and group discussions. As a result it was concluded that a total of 40 plants species belonging to 28 families and 36 genera were used for the treatment of a wide range of problems such as body pain, infertility, cough, digestion, flu, fever, stomach, sexual potency and muscle pain. Herbs (57.50%) were reported as the most common life form followed by shrubs (12.50%), whereas leaves (25%) and fruits (22.5%) were the frequently used plant parts against different diseases. The most commonly used family was Lamiaceae (4 species), followed by Solanaceae and Rosaceae with 3 species each. This study provides useful traditional knowledge of rural communities of the studied area regarding different medicinal plants against a wide range of diseases. Furthermore it provides a documented report to preserve the traditional knowledge of the high valued medicinal plants that can be used for future pharmacological and phytochemical studies for the isolation of different compounds in pharmaceutical industries.