Utilization of Aloe Compounds in Combatting Viral Diseases
Plants contain underutilized resources of compounds that can be employed to combat viral diseases. Aloe vera (L.) Burm. f. (syn. Aloe barbadensis Mill.) has a long history of use in traditional medicine, and A. vera extracts have been reported to possess a huge breadth of pharmacological activities. Here, we discuss the potential of A. vera compounds as antivirals and immunomodulators for the treatment of viral diseases. In particular, we highlight the use of aloe emodin and acemannan as lead compounds that should be considered for further development in the management and prevention of viral diseases. Given the immunomodulatory capacity of A. vera compounds, especially those found in Aloe gel, we also put forward the idea that these compounds should be considered as adjuvants for viral vaccines. Lastly, we present some of the current limitations to the clinical applications of compounds from Aloe, especially from A. vera.