Acanthopanax henryi: Review of Botany, Phytochemistry and Pharmacology

Molecules. 2021 Apr 12;26(8):2215. doi: 10.3390/molecules26082215.


Acanthopanax henryi (Oliv.) Harms (Araliaceae), also known as Eleutherococcus henryi and Caoyewujia (Hengliwujia) in Chinese, is a widely used traditional Chinese herb with the effects of expelling wind and removing dampness, relaxing the muscles and stimulating the blood circulation, and regulating the flow of qi to alleviate pain in the theory of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Acanthopanax henryi (AH, thereafter) possesses ginseng-like activities and is known as ginseng-like herb. In the past decade, a great number of phytochemical and pharmacological studies on AH have been carried out. Several kinds of chemical compositions have been reported, including terpenoids (monoterpenoids, diterpenoids, and triterpenoid saponins), phenylpropanoids, caffeoyl quinic acid derivatives, flavonoids, lignans, sterols, fatty acids, etc., among which, triterpenoid saponins were considered to be the most active components. Considerable pharmacological experiments in vitro have demonstrated that AH possessed anti-neuroinflammatory, anti-adipogenic, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, anti-cancer, anti-oxidation, anti-AChE, anti-BuChE, and antihyaluronidase activities. The present review is an up-to-date and comprehensive analysis of the botany, phytochemistry, and pharmacology of AH.

Keywords: Acanthopanax henryi; Eleutherococcus henryi; biological activities; botany; pharmacology; phytochemistry.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Eleutherococcus / chemistry*
  • Ethnopharmacology*
  • Phytochemicals / analysis*
  • Phytochemicals / chemistry
  • Phytochemicals / isolation & purification
  • Research


  • Phytochemicals