An overview of plant extracts as potential therapeutics

Simon Gibbons

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


There is increasing interest in plant extracts as potential therapeutic agents and the use of a mixture of natural products to treat disease has a number of interesting outcomes, most notably their synergistic effects and polypharmacological action. This report gives a brief overview of patent literature concerning the activities and constituents of plant extracts from commonly cited therapeutic areas, notably anti-infectives, immune-inflammation, cardiovascular and anticancer fields. These agents provide a formidable phytochemical challenge in terms of quality control and the need to ensure batch to batch conformity. Additionally, thorough biological evaluation of extracts is vital to ensure safety and efficacy. These factors are of paramount importance if plant extracts are to be accepted as valid medicinal agents by the healthcare community and to have a future as therapeutic agents.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)489-497
Number of pages9
JournalExpert Opinion on Therapeutic Patents
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2003


  • anticancer
  • anti-infectives
  • cardiovascular
  • herbal medicines
  • immune-inflammation
  • phytochemicals
  • plant extracts
  • TREE

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