exhibit excellent economic and medicinal value, and have found use in traditional medicine, are consumed as a spice, as well as being cultivated as landscape plants. Investigations into the pharmacological activities of the genus
revealed that it manifested a wide range of pharmacological properties including antimicrobial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and analgesic, antitumor, anti-diabetic and anti-obesity, immunoregulation, insecticidal and acaricidal, cardiovascular protective, cytoprotective, as well as neuroprotective properties both
. In the past five years, approximately 306 chemical constituents have been separated and identified from the genus
, covering 111 terpenes, 44 phenylpropanoids, 51 lignans, 17 flavonoids, 53 aromatic compounds, 17 aliphatic compounds, four coumarins, two steroids. This article highlights the traditional uses, phytochemistry and pharmacological properties of the few studied taxa of
through searching for the pieces of literature both at home and abroad, which would provide a reference for the pharmaceutical research and clinical application of this genus.