Faculty Advisor

Weathers, Pamela


Artemisia annua produces artemisinin, a major component of the current malaria treatment. Artemisinin also inhibits growth and germination of other plants. The parasitic plant Striga threatens food security in Africa. A. annua could inhibit Striga but could harm crops. If A. annua does not harm soil viability, farmers could alternate A. annua with their crops. The effects of A. annua on beans, corn, Rhizobium spp. and soil microbes were measured. Pure artemisinin inhibited Striga seeds but did not affect the seeds of either crop plant. Dried A. annua leaves caused a temporary delay in germination of beans but not corn. While A. annua altered the microbe composition of the soil, it did not affect crop growth or the nodulation of beans by Rhizobium.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

April 2011


Biology and Biotechnology

Project Type

Major Qualifying Project



Advisor Department

Biology and Biotechnology

Your accessibility may vary due to other restrictions.