Many of the health benefits associated with Aloe vera have been attributed to the polysaccharides contained in the gel of the leaves. These biological activities include promotion of wound healing, antifungal activity, hypoglycemic or antidiabetic effects antiinflammatory, anticancer, immunomodulatory and gastroprotective properties. While the known biological activities of A. vera will be briefly discussed, it is the aim of this review to further highlight recently discovered effects and applications of the leaf gel. These effects include the potential of whole leaf or inner fillet gel liquid preparations of A. vera to enhance the intestinal absorption and bioavailability of co-administered compounds as well as enhancement of skin permeation. In addition, important pharmaceutical applications such as the use of the dried A. vera gel powder as an excipient in sustained release pharmaceutical dosage forms will be outlined.