Alkaloids, tannins, saponins, steroid, terpenoid, flavonoids, phlobatannin and cardic glycoside distribution in ten medicinal plants belonging to different families were assessed and compared. The medicinal plants investigated were Cleome nutidosperma, Emilia coccinea, Euphorbia heterophylla, Physalis angulata, Richardia bransitensis, Scopania dulcis, Sida acuta, Spigelia anthelmia, Stachytarpheta cayennensis and Tridax procumbens. All the plants were found to contain alkaloids, tannins and flavonoids except for the absence of tannins in S. acuta and flavonoids in S. cayennsis respectively. The significance of the plants in traditional medicine and the importance of the distribution of these chemical constituents were discussed with respect to the role of these plants in ethnomedicine in Nigeria.
Key words: Medicinal plants, ethnomedicine, phytochemical constituents.
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