Paper Details


Phylogenetic exploration of traditional Chinese medicinal plants: a case study on Lamiaceae 

Wajid Zaman, Jianfei Ye, Mushtaq Ahmad, Saddam Saqib, Zabta Khan Shinwari and Zhiduan Chen

Lamiaceae (Labiatae) are one of the most important medicinal plant families having a wide variety of plants with traditional medicinal uses. The medicinal species of Lamiaceae are mainly used for musculoskeletal, skin, circulatory and digestive disorders in traditional Chinese medicines (TCMs). The purpose of this study was to provide a phylogenetic exploration of traditionally used medicinal taxa of Lamiaceae as a roadmap to predict potential medicinal plants from this family for future bioprospecting. We collected data of Lamiaceae TCM plants from local pharmacopeias with traditional medicinal uses and phytochemical information. The data were examined through phylogenetic approaches i.e. nearest taxon index (NTI) and net related index (NRI) to find clustering and overdispersion of TCM plants of Lamiaceae. In addition, we used hot node analysis to identify overrepresentation among lineages against different disorders that possess high priority for further phytochemical and pharmacological investigation. The phylogenetic patterns were examined for the traditional uses of 345 species belonging to 77 Lamiaceae genera in nine medicinal categories. Overall, most of the medicinal uses showed clustered structure on the phylogeny of TCM plants of Lamiaceae (NRI and NTI > 1). Of all the nine medicinal usage categories, the NRI matrix identified only two significant clusterings with p<0.05 for urinary and reproductive disorders. In total of 488 hot nodes that are significantly overabundant in species are used to treat different disorders. The highest number of hot nodes recovered was 191 for reproductive disorder, of these 138 species were reported to be potential novel species. The majority of new potential species were reported from Ajuga, Elsholtzia and Salvia. These results strongly indicate the independent discovery of plant usages in the light of phylogenetic exploration. We concluded that phylogenetic approaches could focus on screening efforts of taxonomic groups containing traditionally used species with abundant therapeutic compounds for the discovery of alternative/complementary medicines. The phylogeny-based study, after further refinement, will expand the horizon of medicinal plant exploration of plant-based bioactive compounds.  

To Cite this article: Zaman, W., J. Ye, M. Ahmad, S. Saqib, Z.K. Shinwari and Z. Chen. 2022. Phylogenetic exploration of traditional Chinese medicinal plants: a case study on Lamiaceae. Pak. J. Bot., 54(3): DOI:  

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