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Alseis yucatanensis: a natural product from Belize that exhibits multiple mechanisms of vasorelaxation

Authors: Donald F. Slish, Rosita Arvigo, Michael J. Balick

Source: Journal of Ethnopharmacology 92 (2004) 297–302

An aqueous extract of the bark of Alseis yucatanensis was studied to determine its mechanism of action in the relaxation of endotheliumdenuded rat aortic tissues. The extract relaxed both norepinephrine (NE) and KCl-contracted vessels, with ED50’s of 0.12 and 1.73 mg/mL, respectively. In NE-contracted vessels, two phases of relaxation were evident which were separated in both time and dose range. At high concentrations, a rapid relaxation was seen that was due to the blocking of internal (ED50 = 0.49 mg/mL) and external (ED50 = 2.34 mg/mL) calcium channels. A second, slowly developing (i.e., long-term) relaxation to baseline was seen at lower concentrations. The time to complete relaxation was dose-dependent. This long-term response was not seen in KCl-contracted vessels, was prolonged by TEA, and could be reversed by the addition of KCl to the bath. These data suggest that the long-term relaxation is due to the opening of potassium channels.

Keywords: Rat aorta; Relaxation; Calcium release channel; Receptor-operated channels; Potassium channels


An Access and Benefit-Sharing Commons

Author: Paul Oldham - ESRC Centre for Economic and Social Aspects of Genomics (Cesagen) Lancaster University, UK

Source: Initiative for the Prevention of Biopiracy, Research Documents, Year IV, No. 11.

Description: The Role of Commons/Open Source Licenses in the International Regime on Access to Genetic Resources and Benefit Sharing

An Ethnobotanical Research Training Workshop in Madagascar

Authors:  Will McClatchey and Lisa X Gollin

Source: Ethnobotany Research & Applications 3:309-327 (2005)


A consortium of conservation groups organized by the Missouri Botanical Garden in 2005 responded to a call for development of conservation areas in Madgascar that would include human communities within them by arranging for a training workshop on ethnobotanical research methods. The authors developed and implemented the workshop with sixteen participating Malagasy researchers. The content of the workshop and analyses of classroom and field components is provided. The workshop participants concluded that the process was very useful for their work in conservation of biological diversity and determined to continue to develop their skills in ethnobotanical research as a group of collaborating scholars.