Ardisia: Health-promoting properties and toxicity of phytochemicals and extracts

Elvira González De Mejía, Marco Vinicio Ramírez-Mares

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Ardisia species (Myrsinaceae) are found throughout tropical and subtropical regions of the world. Traditional medicinal uses attributed to Ardisia include alleviation of liver cancer, swelling, rheumatism, earache, cough, fever, diarrhea, broken bones, dysmenorrhea, respiratory tract infections, traumatic injuries, inflammation, pain, snake and insect bites, birth complications and to improve general blood circulation, among others. Ardisia species are rich in polyphenols, triterpenoid saponins, isocoumarins, quinones and alkylphenols. A summary of the uses, potential health benefits, adverse reactions and important bioactive phytochemicals isolated from the Ardisia species is presented. Future research needs to include more toxicological studies, more comprehensive chemical characterization of extracts, bioavailability, extract standardization, investigation of possible herbdrug interactions, plant improvement with regards to bioactivity and composition, and additional human and animal studies to confirm the health-promoting properties claimed for Ardisia species. The information presented here exemplifies the potential of Ardisia species as a source of chemotherapeutic, chemo-modulating and/or chemopreventive agents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)667-674
Number of pages8
JournalToxicology Mechanisms and Methods
Issue number9
StatePublished - Nov 2011


  • Bioactivity
  • Chemoprevention
  • Herbal medicine
  • Myrsinaceae
  • Secondary metabolites

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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