Plant and plant-derived natural products have a long and significant history in traditional medicine all over the world. Many studies in the recent past years focused on the benefic properties of essential oils (EOs) and their major components, terpenes and terpenoids (that are mostly monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes), and their biological properties. This chapter focuses on terpenoids as important bioactive constituents of EOs. It describes their uses, importance, extraction processes, and classification. The chapter provides an in-depth overview of the latest findings/research about terpenoids in EOs. It contains a well-prepared background, introduction, classification, chemical tests, bioactivities, as well as the characterization of terpenoids. It also discusses the bioactivities of EOs and that of terpenoids, with regard to their synergetic and/or their antagonistic effects.
Part of the book: Essential Oils
Human beings have relied on herbs and medicinal plants as sources of food and remedy from time immemorial. Bioactive compounds from plants are currently the subject of much research interest, but their extraction as part of phytochemical and/or biological investigations present specific challenges. Herbalists or scientists have developed many protocols of extraction of bioactive ingredients to ensure the effectiveness and the efficacy of crude drugs that were used to get relief from sickness. With the advent of new leads from plants such as morphine, quinine, taxol, artemisinin, and alkaloids from Voacanga species, a lot of attention is paid to the mode of extraction of active phytochemicals to limit the cost linked to the synthesis and isolation. Thus, the extraction of active compounds from plants needs appropriate extraction methods and techniques that provide bioactive ingredients-rich extracts and fractions. The extraction procedures, therefore, play a critical role in the yield, the nature of phytochemical content, etc. This chapter aims to present, describe, and compare extraction procedures of bioactive compounds from herbs and medicinal plants.
Part of the book: Natural Medicinal Plants