A comprehensive review of the botany, phytochemistry, pharmacology, and toxicology of Murrayae Folium et Cacumen

Front Pharmacol. 2024 Mar 28:15:1337161. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2024.1337161. eCollection 2024.


Ethnopharmacological relevance: Murrayae Folium et Cacumen (MFC) is a plant considered to be a traditional Chinese medicine with culinary value as well. The dry leaves and twigs of Murraya paniculata and M. exotica are used to treat stomach aches, rheumatism, toothaches, swelling, and insect and snake bites. They are also used to prepare spicy chicken dishes. Aim of the review: This review comprehensively summarizes the available information on the botanical characterization, phytochemistry, pharmacological activities, pharmacodynamics, pharmacokinetics, and toxicity of MFC. Methods: Relevant scientific literature up to August 2023 was included in the study. Chinese and English studies on MFC were collected from databases, including PubMed, Elsevier, Web of Science, Springer, Science Direct, Wiley, ACS, and CNKI (Chinese). Doctoral and Master's dissertations were also included. Results: In total, 720 compounds have been identified and reported in the literature, including flavonoids, coumarins, alkaloids, sterols, phenylpropenols, organic acids, spirocyclopentenones, and volatile oils. Flavonoids and coumarins are the two most important bioactive compounds responsible for these pharmacological activities. MFC has anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, anti-diabetic, anti-tumor, anti-oxidant, anti-depressant, potential anti-Alzheimer's disease, chondroprotective, and analgesic properties. The pharmacological effects include interrupting the STAT3/NF-κB/COX-2 and EGFR signaling pathways, downregulating EpCAM expression, inhibiting NF-κB and ERK signals, inhibiting the EP/cAMP/PKA signaling pathway and miR-29a/Wnt/β-catenin signaling activity, and upregulating Foxo3a expression. Conclusion: This review demonstrates that the chemical constituents, pharmacological activities, pharmacodynamics, pharmacokinetics, and toxicity of MFC support its use in traditional Chinese botanical medicines. MFC contains a wide range of chemical compounds. Flavonoids and coumarins promote strong pharmacological activity and, are low-toxicity natural phytomedicines that are widely used in medicine, food, ornamentation, and cosmetics, making MFC a promising compound for development and use in the treatment of several medical conditions.

Keywords: Murraya exotica; Murraya paniculata; Murrayae Folium et Cacumen; pharmacology; phytochemistry; toxicology.

Publication types

  • Review

Grants and funding

The author(s) declare financial support was received for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article. This current work was supported by Natural Science Foundation of Liaoning Province (No. 2015020746) and 345 Talent Project of Shengjing Hospital of China Medical University.