Traditional uses, nutrition, phytochemistry and various pharmacological properties of Indian wild pear (Review)
- Om Prakash
- Attar Singh Chauhan
- Vithal Balavant Kudachikar
Affiliations: Fruits and Vegetable Technology, CSIR‑Central Food Technological Research Institute, Mysuru, Karnataka 570020, India
- Published online on: August 25, 2021 https://doi.org/10.3892/ijfn.2021.19
Copyright: © Prakash
et al. This is an open access article distributed under the
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Commons Attribution License.
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The consumption of wild edible fruits for nutritional and medicinal benefits has been known for a long time. These naturally occurring fruit plants can thrive well under adverse climatic conditions and are being harvested and marketed locally. Pyrus pashia (P. pashia; Buch.‑Ham. ex D. Don; family, Rosaceae), commonly known as ‘wild edible or Himalayan pear’ is one of such underutilized trees. It is widely distributed in temperate regions up to an altitude of 2,000 m in Western Himalaya. It has broad applications in traditional therapeutics for the treatment of diseases, such as eye infections, sore throat, diarrhea, stomach disorders and other infectious diseases. Chlorogenic acid, flavan‑3‑ols, gallic acid, tannins, alkaloids, hydroquinone, terpenoids and its isomers have been isolated and identified from the leaf, fruit, flower and bark portion of P. pashia. The phytochemicals present in the P. pashia tree may be responsible for the traditional beneficial health effects of the plant. Numerous scientific studies on P. pashia have validated the general uses of the plant by the native population; however, the data on its pharmacological properties and the mechanisms involved are insufficient. The present review aimed to provide a critical evaluation of the distribution, traditional uses, phytochemicals present, pharmacological activities and nutritional value of different plant parts of P. pashia. Detailed research is required on individual phytochemicals present and toxicological studies at the gene level. In‑depth molecular studies may also confirm the various pharmaceutical claims for the development of novel pharmaceutical drugs and functional food products.