Naturally Occurring Triterpenoid Saponins



Naturally occurring new triterpenoid saponins reported from mid-1996 to March, 2007 are reviewed including their physical constants and plant sources, and are compiled in Table 1. New saponins are arranged in Table 1 on the basis of the skeletal structures of their aglycones, e.g., oleanane type, ursane type, lupane type, hopane type, taraxastane type, cycloartane type, lanostane type, tirucallane type, dammarane type, cucurbitane type, and holostane type. The known triterpenoid saponins and prosapogenins of the new saponins, the biological and pharmacological activities of which were published during 1996–2007, are also reviewed together with their plant sources listed in Table 2 according to the skeletal structures of their aglycones in the same fashion as in Table 1. The plant and animal sources of both new and known bioactive triterpenoid saponins are collected in Table 3 in alphabetical order. The biological and pharmacological activities such as antiallergic, antiatherosclerosis and antiplatelet, antibacterial, anticomplementary, antidiabetic, contraceptive, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antileishmanial, antimalarial/antiplasmodial, anti-obesity, anti-proliferative, antipsoriatic, antispasmodic, antisweet, antiviral, cytotoxic/antitumor, detoxication, gastroprotective, haemolytic, hepatoprotective, immunomodulatory, anti-enzyme, anti-osteoporotic, insecticidal, insulin-like, membrane-porosity, molluscicidal, neuropharmacological, anti-endothelial dysfunction, snake venom antidote, and sweet activities of these saponins or derived prosapogenins are discussed briefly after Table 3.