Potential nephroprotective phytochemicals: Mechanism and future prospects

J Ethnopharmacol. 2022 Jan 30:283:114743. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2021.114743. Epub 2021 Oct 14.


Ethnopharmacological relevance: Kidney disease (KD) is one of the serious health issues, which causes worrisome morbidity and economic burden. Therapeutic strategies are available however majority of them are associated with severe adverse effects and poor patient compliance and adherence. This explorative article was undertaken to provide a holistic review of known nephroprotective (NP) phytoconstituents along with their research-based evidences on mechanism, sources, and clinical trials that may play essential role in prevention and cure of KD.

Aim of the study: The present systematic review aimed to provide in-depth and better evidences of the global burden of KD, phytoconstituents as NP with emphasis on mechanism of action both in vitro and in vivo, their wide biological sources as well as their clinical efficacy in management of kidney disease and its related disorders.

Material and methods: Comprehensive information was searched systematically from electronic databases, namely, PubMed, Sciencedirect, Wiley, Scopus, Google scholar and Springer until February 2021 to find relevant data for publication on phytoconstituents with nephroprotective potential.

Results: In total, 24,327 articles were screened in first search for "phytoconstituents and medicinal plants for nephroprotection and kidney disorder". On the basis of exclusion and inclusion criteria, 24,091 were excluded. Only 236 papers were spotted to have superlative quality data, which is appropriate under titles and sub-titles of the present review. The phytoconstituents having multiple research evidence along with wide number of medicinal plants sources and mechanism reported for nephroprotection have been selected and reviewed.

Conclusion: This review, based on pre-clinical and clinical data of NP phytoconstituents, provides scientific-basis for the rational discovery, development and utilization of these upcoming treatment practices. Further,-more clinical studies are warranted to improve the pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic understanding of phytoconstituents. Also, more specific evaluation for natural sources is needed.

Keywords: Clinical trials; Kidney disease; Mechanism; Medicinal plants; Nephroprotective; Phytoconstituents.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Kidney Diseases / prevention & control*
  • Phytochemicals / chemistry
  • Phytochemicals / pharmacology
  • Phytotherapy / methods
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Plants, Medicinal / chemistry*


  • Phytochemicals
  • Plant Extracts