Tatoosh tatoosh at
Fri Jun 13 11:17:45 EDT 1997


Would you be willing to share your story of what butterflies mean to
you?  The subject matter may 
be based on science, or perhaps mystery, or even of spiritual
What I am seeking is information on butterflies that can be used in the
production of a video.

There seems to be an interesting thread of mystery surrounding
butterflies, which I would like to 
make available in story form.  I have recently discovered that
butterflies not only hold the key to 
the balance of nature, but also will lead us to medicinal properties in
host plants.

A small portion of what I have found is:

1.	The Mayan pyramids are thought by some to contain the mystery of
nature.  Legend has 
	it the statues guard the wisdom of the pyramids.  Did you know the
breast plate of the 
	statue is actually a butterfly?

2.	The father of modern medicine was a student of the Asclepian

3.	Host plants for butterflies contain the major chemicals associated
with modern 
	pharmaceutical drugs and ancient herbal remedies.

	For example, according to Dr. S.K. Jain, FNA, Director, Institute of
Ethnobiology and
	Dr. (Ms) Sneh Lata, Researcher, Institute of Ethnobiology, c/o National
	Research Institute, Lucknow-226001 India, that out of 45,000 plants,
2532 have known 
	medicinal properties.  Of those Asclepias is known as the cardiotonic.

	While meeting with Dr. Payton, Chair of the chemistry department of
Portland State 
	University, he saw for himself the chemicals present in Asclepias

	Could butterflies lead us to new historic medical cures?  The chemical
breakdown for 
	Asclepias syriaca can be found as E.C. in the Enzyme Structures
Database.  You 
	will find chemicals that are known to cure specific diseases.  

	More research and testing on this genus can and should be done.  Dr.
Roy, staff scientist 
	with Oregon Health Science University, C.R.O.E.T. Research Facility,
with impeccable 
	credentials, who has worked with Dr. Jain and Dr. Lata in the past
would be willing to 
	study the Asclepias genus on a molecular scale.  Would you be
interested in where his 
	findings will lead?

You are probably wondering what all this has to do with butterflies, the
ambassador to the insect 
world.  If you will share something of importance in respect to
butterflies, you will be supplying 
needed data that will help us complete the story.

If you have specialized in a particular aspect of this ambassador,
please submit your findings so 
they can be shared with others.

Also, if you have a story that touches the spiritual or mysterious, I
would like to hear it.  


Hans Schnauber
Physionom Researcher
Chair, National Butterfly Release
hans7 at

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