Ethnomedicinnal Evaluation of Herbaceous Plants in the Guineo-Congolaise Zone of the Benin
Eudes Florent Sobakin, Serge Adomou, Carlos Ahoyo, Thierry Dèhouégnon Houehanou, Gérard Nounagnon Gouwakinnou, Armand Natta
University of Parakou, Lab. of Ecology, Botany and Plant Biology, Benin
In underdeveloped countries, plants occupy a central place in human life in society with regard to their multiple functions in the fields of food, medicine, cultural, agro-forestry, fuel and technology. However, knowledge about herbaceous medicinal plants used in the treatment of various diseases or ailments is not as popular as woody species are. The present study proposes (i) to identify the main herbaceous medicinal plants in the Guinean-Congolese zone of Benin and (ii) to assess the effect of socio-environmental factors such as age, sex, religion. , ethnicity, level of education and phytogeographic district, determining the variation in knowledge related to the use of herbaceous medicinal plants. A study is carried out through individual and semi-structured interviews with 310 people on medicinal herbaceous species in the Guinean-Congolese zone of Benin. The medicinal use values (UV) and relative citation frequencies (FC) for each species were determined. The Kruskal-Wallis and Mann Whitney inference tests are performed on socio-environmental factors in order to identify factors having a significant effect. Principal Component Analysis was applied to the medicinal use value (UV) on the variables having a significant effect. This multivariate analysis allow us to assess the use pattern according to factors. A total of 150 herbaceous species have been identified in the treatment of various diseases and which are grouped into 75 families and 135 botanical genera with a significant effect of gender, ethnicity, religion and educational level. Among the 150 species identified, 27 species are used more in the treatment of diseases than the others. This study could contribute to the preservation and sustainable use and conservation of natural biological resources and to the strengthening of knowledge about medicinal herbaceous plants in the Guinean-Congolese zone of Benin.
Keywords: Benin, diseases, Guineo-congolaise, herbaceous, medicinal use
Contact Address: Thierry Dèhouégnon Houehanou, University of Parakou, Laboratoire of Ecology, Botanical and Plant Biology, Parakou, Benin, e-mail: houehanoutgmail.com