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Aims: The present study relates to the hygienic status of medicinal plants sold on markets of the district of Abidjan. This paper focused on Sarcocephalus latifolius used to treat various diseases such as Malaria.
Place and Duration of Study: The ethnobotanical survey was conducted during November 2017, on the Siaka Koné market in Abobo. The microbiology study was carried out at “InstitutPasteur de Côte d’Ivoire”.
Methodology: A semi-structured interview was used during the survey. Germs were isolated and microbial load counted from aqueous extracts (maceration) of collected samples of stem bark using standard bacteriology methods. Investigations were also made on control sample collected in the Savannah at Lamto reserve (Toumodi).
Results: 86% of the plants sold on this market are not well maintained. In fact, 53% of plant organs are stored outdoors on pieces of brick exposed to dust, air humidity and car exhaust. While 20% are under black tarpaulins or stored in dilapidated stores away from light and 13% in bags in open air. To confirm our survey, Sarcocepha luslatifolius was selected from the highest frequency of citations for performing microbiological tests. The number of total coliforms ranged from 1.3×103 to 9.2×107 CFU/g plant, the mean value of total coliforms was 4.7×105 CFU/g, that of mesophilic aerobic germs from 8.1×103 to 5.1×105 CFU/g of plants, the average value of mesophilic aerobic germs was 1.2×105 CFU/g. The presence of Streptococcus, Pseudomonas and Escherichia coli was observed respectively on 93.33%, 16.67% and 3.33% of the samples collected.
Conclusion: Medicinal plants sold and stored under current market conditions are potentially dangerous to health.
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