Welcome to BIO 368 - Medical Botany
Wilkes University

Course instructor: Dr. Kenneth M. Klemow

Foxglove (Digitalis purpurea) provides the heart medication digitalis
(Image obtained from http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/54/Digitalis-stora_hultrum.sweden-25.jpg)

General information

  • Offered during the summer of odd-numbered years
  • Three credits
  • Open to upperclass students, particularly those majoring in biology
  • Satisfies the Botanical distribution area within the biology major
  • Course meets for five weeks; each week has four two-hour lectures.
  • Prerequisites include BIO 121-122 (Principles of Modern Biology I & II), BIO 225 (Population and Evolution Biology), and BIO 226 (Cellular and Molecular Biology); or permission of the instructor; or permission of the instructor. CHM 231-232 is strongly suggested.

Major topics

  • Essential botanical concepts
  • Historical and cultural aspects of plants and medicine
  • Ailments caused by plants
  • Therapeutic uses of plants
  • Psychoactive plants
Link to recorded lectures
Beginning in the summer of 2021, BIO 368 will be offered in an online format.  Lectures are pre-recorded, and distributed through Panopto.  Study guides for each lecture are distributed through email.  Please let me know if anything doesn't come through for you.

Links to student essays

Click the link to the left to see a list of essays prepared by students in the BIO 368 course. Each essay is a condensed summary of recent scientific information concerning plant species of medical importance.  Many are heavily cited in online and published articles.


  • Welcome to BIO 368 for the summer of 2021.  I will update this page on a periodic basis.

Links to a few Websites with information pertaining to the medicinal use of plants.
(Please inform me about broken links or other websites worth including)

And a few links concerning poisonous plants

The use of the Web to sell herbal remedies is big business. Links to some purveyors appear below.

(A listing should not be viewed as providing any kind of endorsement of their products.):

This page posted and maintained by Kenneth M. Klemow, Ph.D., Biology Program, Wilkes University, Wilkes-Barre, PA 18766. Phone: (570) 408-4758, FAX: (570) 408-7862, email: kenneth.klemow@wilkes.edu.