Ethnopharmacology, therapeutic properties and nutritional potentials of carpobrotus edulis: A comprehensive review

Kolajo Adedamola Akinyede, Okobi Eko Ekpo, Oluwafemi Omoniyi Oguntibeju

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Carpobrotus edulis, formerly known as Mesembryanthemum edule L, belongs to the Aizoaceae family of plants. It is a facultative halophytic invasive medicinal and edible succulent plant that is native to South Africa and is distributed worldwide. Hitherto, this plant appears to be mainly known for its ornamental use in decorations, soil stabilization, and erosion control, and not for its many potential medicinal and nutritional benefits, thus suggesting its underutilization. This review presents cogent and comprehensive information on the distribution, ethnomedicinal use, phytochemistry, pharmacology, toxicology, and nutritional value of Carpobrotus edulis and provides the rationale for further pharmacognostic research that will validate its many folkloric medicinal and nutraceutical claims, and promote its standardization into a commercially available product. The reported traditional use of this plant for the treatment of sinusitis, diarrhoea, tuberculosis, infantile eczema, fungal and bacterial infections, oral and vaginal thrush, high blood pressure, diabetes, wound infections, spider and tick bites, sore throat as well as mouth infections are well documented. Its therapeutic activities such as anti‐proliferative, antioxidant, antifungal, antibacterial, antidiabetic, anti‐inflammatory, cytotoxicity, and nutritional value have also been reported to be attributable to the array of phytoconstituents present in the plant. These have promoted renewed research interests into this valuable medicinal plant with a view to repositioning and expanding its uses from the current predominantly ornamental and environmental management role to include phytotherapeutical applications through scientific validation studies that will improve its value for the drug discovery process as well as its contribution to food security.

Original languageBritish English
Article number39
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
JournalScientia Pharmaceutica
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2020


  • Carpobrotus edulis
  • Distribution
  • Ethnomedicinal
  • Pharmaceutical
  • Pharmacology
  • Photochemistry
  • Therapeutic


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