Botanical characteristics, pharmacological effects and medicinal components of Korean Panax ginseng C A Meyer

Acta Pharmacol Sin. 2008 Sep;29(9):1109-18. doi: 10.1111/j.1745-7254.2008.00869.x.


Korean Panax ginseng C A Meyer is mainly used to maintain the homeostasis of the body, and the pharmacological efficacy of Korean ginseng identified by modern science includes improved brain function, pain-relieving effects, preventive effects against tumors as well as anti-tumor activity, enhanced immune system function, anti-diabetic effects, enhanced liver function, adjusted blood pressure, anti-fatigue and anti-stress effects, improved climacteric disorder and sexual functions, as well as anti-oxidative and anti-aging effects. Further clinical studies of these pharmacological efficacies will continue to be carried out. Korean ginseng is found to have such main properties as ginsenoside, ployacetylene, acid polysaccharide, anti-oxidative aromatic compound, and insulin-like acid peptides. The number of ginsenoside types contained in Korean ginseng (38 ginsenosides) is substantially more than that of ginsenoside types contained in American ginseng (19 ginsenosides). Furthermore, Korean ginseng has been identified to contain more main non-saponin compounds, phenol compounds, acid polysaccharides and polyethylene compounds than American ginseng and Sanchi ginseng.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Ginsenosides / chemistry
  • Ginsenosides / pharmacology
  • Humans
  • Korea
  • Panax / chemistry*
  • Phytotherapy*
  • Saponins / chemistry
  • Saponins / pharmacology


  • Ginsenosides
  • Saponins