Background: Arctotis arctotoides
(Asteraceae) is commonly used by the rural people of Eastern Cape for the treatment of epilepsy, indigestion,
catarrh and stomach ache. The leaf paste or juice is applied topically in the treatment of wounds and skin disorders. Unfortunately, no previous
reviews are available for this important medicinal plant. Hence, the aim of this review is to provide a comprehensive overview of the botany, phytochemistry,
pharmacology and toxicology of Arctotis arctotoides
This review was carried out using a comprehensive and systematic literature search on the following databases: Google Scholar,
PubMed, Science Direct and Scopus. Searches were undertaken using the key word “Arctotis arctotoides
” and the six synonyms of Arctotis
identified in the Plant List.
In the first phyto-chemical study of Arctotis arctotoides
, the authors reported that sesquiterpenoids presence was predominant in the root oil
whereas, the essential oils of the leaves, flowers and stems had both monoterpenoids and sesquiterpenoids. The literature survey revealed that Arctotis
has been investigated in four pharmacological areas, including anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-cancer and anti-oxidant activities. Three
toxicity screens for the crude extracts of A. arctotoides
on cell lines, rats and brine shrimp were identified in the literature.
Detailed studies on the bioactivity of the crude extracts and the isolated phyto-chemicals have provided partial evidence as regards the
traditional use of A. arctotoides
in the treatment of wounds in Eastern Cape of South Africa. However, in order to fully exploit the medicinal potential
of A. arctotoides
, the expansion of existing traditional knowledge into neighboring communities where the plant is not currently in use for the stated
indications will support a greater use of the plant in primary healthcare.