Medicinal properties of mangosteen (Garcinia mangostana L.): A comprehensive update

Food Chem Toxicol. 2017 Nov;109(Pt 1):102-122. doi: 10.1016/j.fct.2017.08.021. Epub 2017 Aug 24.


Garcinia mangostana L. (Clusiaceae) is a tropical tree native to Southeast Asia known as mangosteen which fruits possess a distinctive and pleasant taste that has granted them the epithet of "queen of the fruits". The seeds and pericarps of the fruit have a long history of use in the traditional medicinal practices of the region, and beverages containing mangosteen pulp and pericarps are sold worldwide as nutritional supplements. The main phytochemicals present in the species are isoprenylated xanthones, a class of secondary metabolites with multiple reports of biological effects, such as antioxidant, pro-apoptotic, anti-proliferative, antinociceptive, anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective, hypoglycemic and anti-obesity. The diversity of actions displayed by mangosteen xanthones shows that these compounds target multiple signaling pathways involved in different pathologies, and place them as valuable sources for developing new drugs to treat chronic and degenerative diseases. This review article presents a comprehensive update of the toxicological findings on animal models, and the preclinical anticancer, analgesic, neuroprotective, antidiabetic and hypolipidemic effects of G. mangostana L. extracts and its main isolates. Pharmacokinetics, drug delivery systems and reports on dose-finding human trials are also examined.

Keywords: Analgesic; Anticancer; Antidiabetic; Garcinia mangostana L.; Hypolipidemic; Mangosteen; Neuroprotective; Pharmacokinetics; Xanthones.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / chemistry
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology
  • Fruit / chemistry
  • Garcinia mangostana / chemistry*
  • Humans
  • Plant Extracts / chemistry
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Xanthones / chemistry
  • Xanthones / pharmacology


  • Antioxidants
  • Plant Extracts
  • Xanthones