Epilobium spp: Pharmacology and Phytochemistry

Phytother Res. 2018 Jul;32(7):1229-1240. doi: 10.1002/ptr.6072. Epub 2018 Mar 25.


The Epilobium species and their extracts are very popular in folk medicine, for a wide range of applications. The purpose of this review is the analysis of the pharmacological properties of Epilobium spp, considering whether their effects (e.g., anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antitumor, antimicrobial, analgesic, and antiandrogenic) could rationally justify the use of Epilobium as a treatment of numerous diseases. Even if numerous preclinical studies have been reported, randomized controlled clinical trials (for the evaluation of safety and efficacy), and eventually cost-effectiveness studies (to estimate the long-term cumulative costs), are still needed to confirm the usefulness of these medicinal plants in human diseases.

Keywords: Epilobium; oenothein B; pharmaco-toxicological activities; prostate.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / chemistry
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / pharmacology
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / therapeutic use
  • Antioxidants / chemistry
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology
  • Epilobium / chemistry*
  • Ethnopharmacology
  • Humans
  • Medicine, Traditional
  • Phytotherapy / methods
  • Plant Extracts / chemistry*
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use
  • Plants, Medicinal / chemistry


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Antioxidants
  • Plant Extracts