Plant Diversity and carbon stock of Chure/ Manaslu/ Sagarmatha Forest plots have been classified according to land use types. In each land use, permanent plots were established to assess the plant diversity and carbon stock. Anthropogenic disturbance was observed in the most parts of the studied plots. Based on field observation many high value plant species such as Asparagus racemosus are difficult to find and are on the verge of local extinction
Dendroecology of Manaslu / Sagarmatha area Dendroecological studies are being carried out to assess the impacts of climate change on tree species. Quadrates were laid between 3600- 4000m at altitudinal differences of 100 m. In Manaslu, the upward shift of Rhododendron campanulatum were observed at the rate of 2.4m/ year. The study is ongoing.
Medicinal and Aromatic Plants The study aims to cultivate Asparagus racemosus and develop post-harvest technology. The experiment has been carried out in Sasapur VDC of Sarlahi district. Different local varieties of Asparagus racemosus were planted in four different experimental plots. The best varieties will be selected for commercial cultivation. The research is in progress.
Mushroom Technology Research and Development The development of the mycofertilizers is the main goal of this program. To obtain the goal, suitable mycorrhization techniques on pine seedlings under glasshouse conditions were developed. Spore-based inoculum was used for incorporation of mycorrhiza in pine seedlings. Ectomycorrhizal fungi used in the study were collected from various local forests (Govawari, phulchowki, Dahachowk and Dhulikel) and field performance of the developed technology is underway.
Microorganisms The study aims to isolate endophytic fungi from Rhododendron campanulatum and to evaluate their antimicrobial potential. Around 100 endophytes have been isolated. Identification and their antimicrobial properties is underway
MAPs & Development of Herbal Based Polymeric Nanoformulations There is limitation with some traditional herbal drugs due to their poor solubility and absorption. Nano-sized novel drug delivery systems have a great potential for enhancing the activity and overcoming problems associated with herbal medicines. Our current research is focused on:
Analyse the antioxidant activity and phytochemicals of medicinal plants that are in traditional medical practice against stress, allergy, asthma, ageing, memory loss and other anti-inflammatory remedies
Prepare herbal based polymeric nanoemulsions of important traditional herbal medicines using biocompatible polymers.
Wild Edible Fruits Research & Development Program
Evaluate the antioxidant activity and nutritional composition of wild edible fruits
Interact with concerned stakeholders at local level on utilization practices and trade of commercially important WEFs
Market survey of commercially important wild edible fruits
Value addition of active and technically feasible candidates
Identify and recommend the most potential WEF for value addition and green enterprise development
International projects IFS-NAST project Influences of land use practices on soil respiration The aim of the study is to evaluate the effect of traditional land use practices on soil Co2 efflux in the community of the Himalaya region. Environmental gas monitor has been used for the measurement of CO2 flux from soil. Measurement will be conducted in three different seasons and land use types. This study is ongoing.
NAST-EvK2 CNR Project Antioxidant activity, total phenolic and flavonoid content of selected plants The aim of the proposed study is to determine antioxidant property, total phenolic and flavonoid content of medicinal plants and herbal formulations that are used as anti-inflammatory remedies in traditional medicine in selected areas of Sagarmatha National Park. It is expected that the project will contribute in identifying potential natural antioxidant from the medicinal plants, locally practiced as anti-inflammatory remedies. The study provides scope for bio-prospecting of phyto-medicines and opportunities for the development of potential natural antioxidants.
Analysis of pharmacological potential of wild mushrooms Mushrooms are relatively untapped for their pharmacological potential. Recently many novel bioactive compounds are being discovered from wild mushrooms in different geographical and climatic regions of the world. Biological diversity implies chemical diversity. However, research attention has not yet focused on pharmacological potential of indigenous wild mushrooms in Nepal. In such context wild mushrooms are medicinally characterized and various therapeutic potentials are revealed here in this study which will be useful for national pharmaceutical industry.