Australian native plants for wound healing

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Wounds account for a significant and rising portion of healthcare expenditure, with billions of dollars spent annually on chronic wounds alone. The amplified prevalence of chronic wounds from a range of factors such as diabetes, obesity and an aging population, has lead to an outcome where longer hospital admissions, increased expenditure and reduced quality of life by those affected has resulted. The Aboriginal people of Australia have relied on plant medicines for thousands of years to treat a multitude of conditions, with wounds and infections often requiring treatment. A systematic review of the literature pertaining to Aboriginal plant use for the treatment of wounds and related conditions identified a total of 129 plants species. Southern Cross University is a key partner in the Wound Management Innovation Cooperative Research Centre. Southern Cross Plant Science is currently leading a large project aiming to identify plant compounds with potential application in wound healing, with a focus on compounds from Australian native plants. This presentation will provide an overview of the literature review and research being conducted by Southern Cross Plant Science. Additionally a discussion will be included pertaining to the limited use of Australian native plants to treat wounds, and potential explanations for the underutilisation.

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