Main Article Content
Bersama swinnyi is a small to medium-sized tree endemic to evergreen forests of the Eastern Cape and KwaZulu-Natal provinces of South Africa. The species is widely used as traditional medicine throughout its distributional range in the country. A systematic review of the literature studies was carried out to document the phytochemical and ethnomedicinal uses of B. swinnyi. The results of the current study are based on literature survey conducted using various search engines such as Web of Science, Elsevier, Pubmed, Google Scholar, Springer, Science Direct, Scopus, Taylor and Francis, and pre-electronic sources such as books, book chapters, scientific journals and other grey literature obtained from the University library. The bark and root extracts of B. swinnyi are mainly used as aphrodisiac, charm and ritual purposes, and traditional medicine for infertility, impotence, leprosy and menstrual problems. Chemical constituents identified from B. swinnyi include 23-hydroxy betulinaldehyde, 24-propylcholestan-7,15,20-triol, betunal, lupeol, oleanolic acid and swinniol. Bersama swinnyi is a valuable medicinal plant species and future research should focus on more exploratory research to gain a better understanding of the ethnopharmacological properties of the species. There is also a need for extensive toxicological evaluations of crude extracts and compounds isolated from the species since B. swinnyi contains potentially toxic compounds.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.