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Lamiaceae Plants Put the 'Fun' in Antifungal

Fungi

Many years ago, fungi were classified as plants, but that has changed! Fungi are a distinct group of organisms that include mushrooms, mold, and yeast, and are different from plants for two reasons: their cells walls are composed of chitin, and they don’t make their own food. Plants have cell walls composed of cellulose and use photosynthesis to make their own food.

Fungi are microscopic to macroscopic in size. As a matter of fact, the largest single living organism on Earth is the Humongous fungus (Armillaria ostoyae), which is nearly four-square miles in size (BBC, 2014).

Fungi are parasites which are found everywhere on the Earth. Not only do they live in air, water, and on land, but they live in and on plants and animals, including humans. Brown et al., (2012) estimated that at least 25% of the human population (1.9 billion people) have fungal infections of the skin, hair, and nails. Further, systemic fungal infections kill three times as many people than malaria...

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The Immunomodulating Potential of Essential Oils in Relieving Asthma

Asthma

Among the respiratory conditions for which essential oils show promise is bronchial asthma.

Asthma affects some 339 million people worldwide and is the most common chronic disease among children (Morales, 2018). Asthma is characterized by chronic inflammation of the airways of the lungs with symptoms that include wheezing, shortness of breath, tightness of the chest, excessive mucus production, and cough. Asthma may also be classified as atopic (extrinsic) or non-atopic (intrinsic), based on whether symptoms are precipitated by allergens (atopic) or not (non-atopic) (Kumar at al, 2010). Allergic mechanisms are involved in about half of people with asthma.

Atopic asthma commonly involves an infiltration of the airways by components of the immune system such as eosinophils, mast cells, and lymphocytes together with a thickening of the bronchial walls and hypertrophy/ hyperplasia of the smooth muscle of the airways (Cheng et al, 2018). (Hypertrophy refers to an increase in the...

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