Experimental and Clinical Pharmacology of Ziziphus jujuba Mills

Phytother Res. 2017 Mar;31(3):347-365. doi: 10.1002/ptr.5759. Epub 2017 Jan 13.


Ziziphus jujuba Mills, 'annab' in Iran, 'ber' in India or 'pomme sourette' in France, is a species whose fruit (known warmly as 'the fruits of life' in China) has been consumed for centuries for its nutritional value. The food industry used it as a food additive and flavoring. The dry seeds, the crude leaves and the stem bark are still used in ethnopharmacology to treat digestive disorders and gastric ulcers as antitussive, laxative and hypotensive drugs; even now, it is used in China to treat children who suffer from typhoid fever, furuncle and ecthyma. In Taiwan, the dry seeds for the variety spinosa (Suan Zao Ren) are the second most commonly prescribed and used phytomedicine for insomnia. Its popularity and production have increased worldwide in recent years, especially in Europe. The European Pharmacopoeia Commission has been unable to elaborate upon the EP monograph on Ziziphi spinosae semen as was planned. The EMA has not made its recommendations yet. Is it still a gap in the scientific knowledge? Or is difficult for traditional Chinese medicinal herbs to fulfill the style and quality parameters that are required? Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Keywords: Ziziphus jujuba; review; traditional Chinese medicine; var. spinosa.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / pharmacology*
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / therapeutic use
  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic / pharmacology*
  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic / therapeutic use
  • Antioxidants / chemistry
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology*
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal / chemistry
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal / pharmacology
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal / therapeutic use
  • Fruit / chemistry
  • Humans
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Phytotherapy / methods
  • Plant Extracts / chemistry
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use
  • Seeds / chemistry*
  • Ziziphus / chemistry*


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic
  • Antioxidants
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal
  • Plant Extracts
  • suanzaoren