Phytochemical Constituents of Some Nigerian Plants
Assessment of the distribution of alkaloids, saponins, tannins, glycosides, phenols, steroids and flavonoids in ten Nigerian plants belonging to different families was carried out. All the plants investigated contained flavonoids but lacked steroids. Apart from Afzelia africana and Detarium microcarpum, the rest contained alkaloids. Glycosides were present in all except Gongronema latifolium. Phenols occurred in all the plants except A. africana, D. microcarpum and Azadirachta indica. Saponins were absent only in G. latifolium, A. indica and Cola nitida while tannins occurred only in Piper guineense, G. latifolium, Myrianthus arboreus, A. indica, and C. nitida. In quantitative estimation of each phytochemical present in the plants, C. nitida showed the highest percentage alkaloids (7.76%) and Treculia africana the highest percentage saponins (4.24%) while the highest percentage tannins was recorded in A. indica. T. africana had the highest percentage glycosides (24%) and phenols (48%) while A. indica and C. nitida showed the highest percentages of flavonoids. The medicinal uses of the plants understudy were reviewed.
Keywords: Alkaloids, Saponins, Tannins, Glycosides, Phenols, Steroids, Flavonoids, Nigerian plants
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