Recent advances in pharmacological research on Ecklonia species: a review

Arch Pharm Res. 2017 Sep;40(9):981-1005. doi: 10.1007/s12272-017-0948-4. Epub 2017 Aug 24.


The genus Ecklonia (Lessoniaceae, Phaeophyceae), commonly called kelp (brown algae), is abundant on the coasts of Japan and Korea. During the past few decades, Ecklonia species have received tremendous attention for their wide range of therapeutic properties and multiple health benefits, such as great nutritional value and being rich in vitamins, minerals, dietary fiber, proteins, and polysaccharides. Several novel functional ingredients with diversified biological activities have been isolated and possess antimicrobial, antiviral, hepatoprotective, cardioprotective, anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective, anticarcinogenic, immunomodulatory, hypolipidemic, anti-diabetic, and antioxidant therapeutic properties. The present review discusses the phytochemical, pharmacological, therapeutic, nutritional, and health benefits of different species of genus Ecklonia, as well as their use in the prevention of disease and maintenance of good health.

Keywords: Brown seaweed; Ecklonia; Therapeutic potential.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biological Products / chemistry
  • Biological Products / isolation & purification
  • Biological Products / pharmacology*
  • Humans
  • Japan
  • Medicine, East Asian Traditional*
  • Phaeophyta / chemistry*
  • Republic of Korea


  • Biological Products