view more. Follow the link to see Mark's current collection of photographs. Piqued even more, Thao decided to continue to explore the research results to show the potential medicinal benefits of the plant. Thorn named February Student of the Month, Kammerchor Spring Concert March 29 to feature German, Austrian and Czech composers. DANIEL: Kitalong is athletic and easy to be around. ", Stevens says his team is "further exploring how animals and plants are being affected by human actions, including how their defensive behaviors and coloration are being influenced by selection pressure and stresses imposed by humans, from noise pollution to climate change.". Not surprisingly, those plants that more closely matched the background took longer for people to find. DANIEL: Kitalong pulls a few dried specimens out of a cabinet at the Palau National Museum, stems of elongated leaves glued to pieces of paper. Buy a signed copy of Mark Seth Lender's book Smeagull the Seagull & support Living on Earth, © Copyright World Media Foundation. DANIEL: It turns out the answer to that question has to do with this plant’s local Palauan name: KITALONG: Delal a kar. But a traditional tree that grows there, known as the mother of medicine tree, promises a treatment, as Ari Daniel reports. The polio vaccine, chemotherapy, cloning, gene mapping and IVF: all these health milestones, and many more, owe everything to the life, and death, of a young mother. Regardless of what you might call this plant medicine, “she” is nurturing and colorful; often inducing incredibly bright, fractal visions. EurekAlert! And that means “mother of medicine.” Just like the mother to a child, it took care of the Palauans. NewsletterLiving on Earth offers a weekly delivery of the show's rundown to your mailbox. To learn more about the School of Pharmacy, visit “We always enjoy seeing the student’s excitement when they work on scientific projects,” Dr. Tzvia Springer said. He relates easily to people. Contribute to Living on Earth and receive, as our gift to you, an archival print of one of Mark Seth Lender's extraordinary wildlife photographs. These results indicated possible support for the plant usage in coughs and wound-healing. Through a student-led research project, Thao studied her grandmoth… And it’s not clear how responsive Palauans will be to his case of fusing old and new. In addition, she’d like to continue to explore other possible medicinal properties, such as anti-cancer usage. Sailors For The Sea: Be the change you want to sea. The samples come from trees that are 8 to 10 feet tall – trees that have been planted everywhere in Palau.

Thao was interested in studying a plant with personal ties. He grew up primarily in Palau, the backdrop for some of his earliest memories. Creating positive outcomes for future generations. Like other members of Bryophyllum (now included in the genus Kalanchoe ), it can propagate vegetatively from plantlets that develop on its leaf margins. So as a child, I was like, “Well, what’s the use of this tree?” He speaks two languages – the language of western science and the language of traditional remedy. Palau is renowned as a destination for diving and snorkeling round its many reefs and wrecks and its people depend on tourism, fishing and subsistence agriculture. Boston, MA, USA 02199 On the Pacific island of Palau, the modern world rubs shoulders with the traditional, and as the inhabitants eat a more Western diet, they often develop diabetes. The fruits of the mother of medicine tree (photo: Christopher Kitalong). As one of the oldest tree species, gingko is also one of the oldest homeopathic plants and a key herb in Chinese medicine. Nor is it particularly decorative. For the plant, the camouflage may have downsides, which the researchers hope to explore in future studies. I’m Ari Daniel. Plants synthesise hundreds of chemical compounds for functions including defence against insects, fungi, diseases, and herbivorous mammals.Numerous phytochemicals with potential or established biological activity have been identified. Bulbs of the plant known as Lu Bei (Fritallaria delavayi) have been used in Chinese medicine for more than two thousand years. In the Hmong culture, the Mother of Thousands is commonly used for coughs. Home | Contact | RSS | Donate | Newsletter. DANIEL: This is Kitalong’s PhD advisor – Michael Balick, an ethnobotanist at the New York Botanical Garden. KITALONG: It was in our yard. BALICK: Chris’s work is really path breaking in Palau. KITALONG: My father, my grandmother, my uncles showed us, the beauty of what was around us. Thao became interested in studying the plant through pharmacy and it’s led to some favorable preliminary endorsements. DANIEL: This is the concern that’s given Kitalong a mission – to help his fellow Palauans find a way to embrace modern life and their traditional culture at the same time. Lacks's cells – known … 617-417-7053 IMAGE: Fritillaria delavayi in populations with low harvest pressure and no camouflage. Now, researchers reporting November 20 in the journal Current Biology have found that, in places where the herb is harvested more, the plant has evolved to blend in better with the background, making them harder for people to find. Through a student-led research project, Thao studied her grandmother’s household plant, Bryophyllum Daigremontianum (Mother of Thousands) in a pharmacy setting. And Kitalong thinks delal a kar may continue to help his people, this time in the face of a modern medical foe – diabetes. BALICK: Going back to ancient ways – knowing in this forest what you can eat, how you can heal your wounds – gives a culture a greater sense of self-reliance and pride. GARLIC - MOTHER OF MEDICINAL PLANTS. This also meant incorporating the participation of undergraduate student Madison Chapman. But nobody eats the plant. KITALONG: It’s a very rapid change from when my father was born to when I was born. If this story has inspired you, why not explore how you can help further Concordia's mission through giving. "We aim to find out how the plants deal with this problem. DANIEL: Christopher Kitalong still has to run his clinical trial.

Visit: Thao was inspired to research this topic through Concordia’s pharmacy elective course titled “Medicinal Natural Products.” The course is taught by Dr. Uvidelio Castillo, Christopher W. Cunningham, and Terry-Elinor Reid. We have dozens of flexible accelerated and graduate degrees available for adults — online, in-person or at one of our Wisconsin regional centers.

All Rights Reserved Sign up for our newsletter today! The place is Palau, a country in the western tropical Pacific, near the Philippines. To receive Cell Press media alerts, contact To confirm that the plant colors influenced the ability of people to find them, the researchers developed an online citizen science experiment "Spot the Fritillaria." Telephone: 1-617-287-4121 During the class, Thao worked on phytochemical extraction that led to interesting preliminary antimicrobial results. Current Biology strives to foster communication across fields of biology, both by publishing important findings of general interest and through highly accessible front matter for non-specialists.