Licorice (Glycyrrhiza) is one of the most widely used in foods, herbal medicine and one of the extensively researched medicinal plants of the world. In traditional medicine licorice roots have been used against treating many ailments including lung diseases, arthritis, kidney diseases, eczema, heart diseases, gastric ulcer, low blood pressure, allergies, liver toxicity, and certain microbial infections. Licorice extract contains sugars, starch, bitters, resins, essential oils, tannins, inorganic salts and low levels of nitrogenous constituents such as proteins, individual amino acids, and nucleic acids. A large number of biologically active compounds have been isolated from Glycyrrhiza species, where triterpene, saponins and flavonoids are the main constitutes which show broad biological activities.
The present book will discuss the botany, the commercial interests as well as the recent studies on the phytochemistry and pharmacology of licorice. It will also describe the side effects and toxicity of licorice and its bioactive components, an underrepresented subjects of importance.
It will be the first book to present global perspectives of licorice in detail. It will serve as a carefully researched introduction for students, healthcare practitioners, botanists and plant biochemists; full of historical background and bridges the gap between botany, ecology, pharmacology, as well as treatment of diseases.