Advances in Animal and Veterinary Sciences

Review Article
Adv. Anim. Vet. Sci. 4(8): 420-437.
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Waseem Hassan*, Shakila Rehman, Hamsa Noreen, Shehnaz Gul, Neelofar, Nauman Ali

Institute of Chemical Sciences, University of Peshawar, Peshawar- 25120, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan.

Abstract | Since ancient times aromatic plants had not only been used to impart flavor and aroma to food but also for their medicinal & preservative properties. Essential oils are source of numerous bioactive compounds and are commercially significant for food, household, pharmaceutical and cosmetic industries. Because of the mode of extraction, mostly by distillation from aromatic plants, they comprise terpenoids, terpenes, aliphatic components and phenol-derived aromatic components. Essential oils have innumerable biological activities including antiviral, antibacterial, antiparasitical, anti-inflammatory, insecticidal, antifungal, anticarcinogenic, antioxidant and antimutagenic activities. Consequently, bioactivities of essential oils have become increasingly important in the search for safe and natural alternative remedies. For the purpose the current review provides a comprehensive summary on the essential oils and their components of ninety (90) medicinal plants from more than twenty different families. Furthermore, this review covers up-to-date literatures on sources, composition, extraction techniques, characterization, general biological activities and therapeutic potentials of essential oils. The results studied in this review are aimed at attracting the attention of researchers searching for new drugs from natural products as well as those exploring the pharmaceutical diversity of essential oils.

Keywords | Medicinal plants, Essential Oils, Biological Activities