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Year : 2016  |  Volume : 36  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 65-71

A systematic and mechanistic review on the phytopharmacological properties of Alhagi species

1 Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, Babol University of Medical Sciences, Babol, Iran
2 Department of Toxicology and Pharmacology, Faculty of Pharmacy, Mazandaran University of Medical Sciences, Sari, Iran
3 Student Research Committee, Department of Immunology, School of Medicine, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
4 Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, Urmia University of Medical Sciences, Urmia, Iran
5 Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Urmia University, Urmia, Iran
6 Department of Public Health, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran

Correspondence Address:
Milad Moloudizargari
Department of Immunology, School of Medicine, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/asl.ASL_37_16

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Alhagi species are well known in Iran (locally known as Khar Shotor) and other parts of Asia as a popular folk medicine. Recent research has shown extensive pharmacological effects of these species. This paper is a comprehensive review of the phytopharmacological effects and traditional uses of Alhagi species and their active constituents with special attention to the responsible mechanisms, effective dosages and routes of administration. The Alhagi species studied in this paper include: A. maurorum, A. camelorum, A. persarum, A. pseudoalhagi, and A. kirgisorum. In order to include all the up to date data, the authors went through several databases including the Web of Science, Embase, etc. The findings were critically reviewed and sorted on the basis of relevance to the topic. Tables have been used to clearly present the ideas and discrepancies were settled through discussion. Alhagi species have significant biomedical properties which can be exploited in clinical use. Proantocyanidin isolated from A. pseudoalhagi has significant biochemical effects on blood factors. Among Alhagi species, A. camelorum and A. maurorum possess the highest anti-microbial activity. Most of the effects observed with A. maurorum are dose-dependent. This paper indicates with emphasis that Alhagi species are safe and rich sources of biologically active compounds with low toxicity. Since DNA damage has been observed following the ingestion of specific concentrations of A. pseudalhagi, care should be taken during administration of the plant for therapeutic use. Further studies are required to confirm the safety and quality of these plants to be used by clinicians as therapeutic agents.

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