Review of anti-inflammatory, immune-modulatory and wound healing properties of molluscs

Ahmad, Tarek B. and Liu, Lei and Kotiw, Michael and Benkendorff, Kirsten (2018) Review of anti-inflammatory, immune-modulatory and wound healing properties of molluscs. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 210. pp. 156-178. ISSN 0378-8741


Ethnopharmacological relevance: This review focuses on traditional and contemporary anti-inflammatory uses of mollusc-derived products summarizing all the in vitro and human clinical trials that have tested the anti-inflammatory activity of molluscan natural products. Inflammatory conditions, burns and wounds have been an ongoing concern for human health since the early era of civilisation. Many texts from ancient medicine have recorded the symptoms, signs and treatments for these conditions. Natural treatments are well documented in traditional European medicine, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), siddha and ancient Mediterranean and African traditional medicine and include a surprisingly large number of molluscan species. Materials and methods: An extensive review of the Materia Medica and scientific literature was undertaken using key word searches for 'mollusk' and 'anti-inflammatory' or 'immunomodulatory' or 'wound healing'. Results: Molluscs have been used in ethnomedicine by many traditional cultures to treat different aspects of inflammatory conditions. We found 104 different anti-inflammatory preparations from a variety of molluscan species, of which 70 were from the well-documented Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). This traditional use of molluscs has driven the testing for anti-inflammatory activity in extracts from some species in the phylum Mollusca, with 20 in vitro studies, 40 in vivo animal studies and 14 human clinical trials performed to substantiate the anti-inflammatory and wound healing of molluscs. Some of these studies have led to the approval of mollusk-derived products to be used as over-the-counter (OTC) nutriceuticals, like Lyprinol® and Biolane™ from the New Zealand green lipped mussel Perna canaliculus. Conclusion: Natural products provide important leads for the development of pharmaceuticals, including anti-inflammatory agents. Only a small proportion of the molluscan traditional medicines have been tested to confirm their anti-inflammatory activity and most screening studies have tested crude extracts from molluscs without any chemical characterisation. This highlights the need for further research to strategically identify the anti-inflammatory compounds in molluscan medicines to provide leads for novel anti-inflammatory drugs in the future.

Statistics for USQ ePrint 33068
Statistics for this ePrint Item
Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Published version cannot be displayed due to copyright restrictions.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Date Deposited: 12 Dec 2017 03:28
Last Modified: 14 May 2018 00:44
Uncontrolled Keywords: Marine natural products, Mollusca, Shells, TCM, Traditional Chinese Medicine, Materia Medica, Lyprinol, Inflammation, Wound healing
Fields of Research (2008): 11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1104 Complementary and Alternative Medicine > 110499 Complementary and Alternative Medicine not elsewhere classified
Fields of Research (2020): 42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4208 Traditional, complementary and integrative medicine > 420899 Traditional, complementary and integrative medicine not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): C Society > 92 Health > 9299 Other Health > 929999 Health not elsewhere classified
Identification Number or DOI:

Actions (login required)

View Item Archive Repository Staff Only