Rhus coriaria L. (Sumac), belonging to the Anacardiaceae family, is an important and most used species of the genus Rhus in the Mediterranean region since antiquity. Sumac has long been used as a flavoring spice, drink, appetizer, and as acidulant in food recipes; in addition to its use in traditional medicine. The role of plant in leather and textile industry is also significant. R. coriaria is very rich in phenolics mainly, tannins and flavonoids, in addition to its abundance in organic acids. The leaves and fruits of R. coriaria are recognized to have defensive and beneficial effects on a wide set of diseases including, but not limited to, diabetes mellitus, cancer, stroke, oral-diseases, inflammation, diarrhea, and dysentery. On the other hand, Sumac extracts were found to possess a potential antiviral, antimicrobial, antifungal, antioxidant and hypolipidemic activities. This review updates the current phytochemical, biological and therapeutic knowledge so far exist on R. coriaria. It also aims at highlighting the importance of Sumac extracts as a promising and potential source of functional ingredients and nutriceuticals with desirable bioactivities, prompting the further use of Sumac in food preservation, pharmacology and functional food industries.
Jordan Journal of Biological Sciences (JJBS)