Saponins are biologically active components of many medicinal plants. From ancient times till our days the saponins containing medicinal plants are used in medicine with different purposes, in particular as anti-cancer agents in the folk (traditional) medicine. Therefore, many investigations are focused on the proapoptotic, toxic and proliferation suppressing properties of saponins. Publications from 2000 to 2014 dealing with medical applications of plant-derived saponins and saponincontaining herbs are reviewed.
Keywords: 18α-glycyrrhetinic acid, Alpha-hederin, Apoptosis, Astragalosides, Astragalus genus, Bryonia genus, Cell proliferation, Giganteosides, Glycine genus, Glycyrrhíza genus, Glycyrrhizin, Hedera genus, Necrosis, Nigella genus, Soyasaponins.