Issue date: 14 March 2002

Natural plant remedies are becoming increasingly popular for treating ailments ¡V but like all medicines they can carry risks. A team of scientists from the University of the West of England will be weighing up the pros and cons of plant remedies during Science Week.

Professor Wendy Purcell, Dean of the Faculty of Applied Sciences at UWE, said she was delighted that the faculty could contribute to National Science Week in such a relevant way. ¡§This is a topic of great interest to people in their everyday lives. We are becoming increasingly familiar with the medicinal and cosmetic uses of plants such as yew and aloe vera. But we also need to understand the potential for harmful interactions between the active ingredients in plants and other products and medicines we use."

The UWE display ¡V which will include information on possible toxic interactions between medicinal plants and synthetic preparations ¡V will be featured during 16 and 17 March at Wildwalk-At-Bristol.

The risk of diseases such as malaria for travellers to certain countries, and how plants like quinine have helped to combat them, will form another fascinating aspect of the display. In addition to plants as drugs, visitors to the stand will be able to find out about the use of plant products as preservatives, cosmetics and their use in industry.


Editor¡¦s notes

„h The Medicinal Plants display is open on Saturday 16 and Sunday 17 March between 10.00am and 6.00pm.
„h It forms part of National Science Week, which runs from 8 ¡V 17 March at the At-Bristol complex.
„h Entrance to the Medicinal Plants display will be free with a ticket to Wildwalk-At-Bristol.

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