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Phytother Res. 2019 Nov 11. doi: 10.1002/ptr.6550. [Epub ahead of print]

Malva species: Insights on its chemical composition towards pharmacological applications.

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Zabol Medicinal Plants Research Center, Zabol University of Medical Sciences, Zabol, Iran.
Instituto de Ciencias Básicas, Universidad Veracruzana, Xalapa, México.
School of Food Science and Nutrition, University of Leeds, Leeds, LS2 9JT, UK.
Phytochemistry Research Center, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.
Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, School of Pharmacy, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.
Department of Botany, Lahore College for Women University, Lahore, Pakistan.
Institute of Fermentation Technology and Microbiology, Lodz University of Technology, Lodz, Poland.
Alternative Crops and Organic Production Department, Institute of Field and Vegetable Crops, Novi Sad, Serbia.
Institute of Pharmacology, Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology, Medical Faculty, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia.
Department of Pharmacognosy and Biotechnology, School of Pharmacy, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.
Department of Field and Vegetable Crops, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Novi Sad, Novi Sad, Serbia.
Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Science, University of Yaounde, Yaounde, Cameroon.
Faculty of Medicine, University of Porto, Porto, Portugal.
Institute for Research and Innovation in Health (i3S), University of Porto, Porto, Portugal.


Malvaceae family is typical from the Mediterranean region, contains 240 genera and more than 4,200 species. They are most commonly used as ornamental plants, although they can also be conceived as a food resource and remedy for various diseases, such as digestive, respiratory, genitourinary, throat infections, and skeletal and skin disorders, as also injuries where they are profoundly applied for skin care and as antiseptic and demulcent. They also possess diuretic, lenitive, spasmolytic, and laxative effects, besides to be used as antidiarrheal. Thus, the present review provides in-depth data on Malva spp. potential applications and phytochemical composition for food and pharmaceutical industries. Habitat and cultivation conditions and the clinical reports related to its biological effects are also emphasized. Malva spp. possess a wide variety of chemical constituents (such as polysaccharides, coumarins, flavonoids, polyphenols, vitamins, terpenes, and tannins) found in different plant organs, especially in leaves and flowers, connected to their biological activity. In general, Malva spp. have rather moderate antimicrobial activity, high antiinflammatory and wound healing activities, strong antioxidant activity, and anticancer properties. Results from in vitro and in vivo experiments encourage more in-depth studies, namely clinical trials, towards to improve knowledge on the use of Malva spp. for the treatment of various health conditions in humans.


Malva; habitat; pharmacological properties; phytochemistry; traditional uses


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