The cardiovascular and respiratory systems are critical to an optimally functioning body; their ailments are some of the leading causes of death around the world. Several medicinal plants can be used to complement established Western medicine treatments in reducing the effects of heart attacks, stroke, and high blood pressure. In addition, many people around the world depend on plants to soothe their respiratory systems, with plants that act as cough suppressants, bronchodilators, and mucus-membrane balms, such as camphor, eucalyptus, and echinacea. Through consideration of active ingredients and potential interactions, you will be able to propose appropriate choices of medicinal plants when presented with the problem of treating an illness or achieving a wellness goal.
The following course is required to be completed before taking this course:
Key Course Takeaways
Assess the effects of medicinal plants on the cardiovascular system, then select an appropriate plant based on the desired effects
Assess the effects of medicinal plants on the respiratory system, then select an appropriate plant based on the desired effects
Senior Research Associate and Senior Lecturer, Cornell CALS
Giulia Friso obtained her B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Biology and her Ph.D in Biochemistry and Biophysics at the University of Padua (Italy). She was a postdoctoral fellow at the Department of Biochemistry at Imperial College, London (UK), and at the Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry at UCSF in San Francisco. Giulia was a research scientist at the discovery unit of the pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca in Stockholm (Sweden). She joined the Plant Biology Department at Cornell University in 2001 and is currently senior research associate and senior lecturer.
“My goal as a teacher is to inspire my students in the learning process and engage them in the process of discovery; facilitate mastery of plant biology; and help them integrate concepts of biochemistry, pharmacology, physiology, ethnobotany, indigenous knowledge, and bioprospecting. I also aim to transmit my enthusiasm as a researcher and a teacher, influencing my students to commit to my course and interest them in the field of medicinal plants and drug discovery. I am deeply interested to convey a knowledge and awareness of different cultural practices, values, and beliefs, and help my students gain an understanding of their own cultural perspective.”