Medicinal properties of Commiphora gileadensis

David Iluz, Miri Hoffman, Nechama Gilboa-Garber, Zohar Amar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Commiphora gileadensis is a plant that was cultivated in ancient times in the land of Israel, particularly in the oases of the Dead Sea Basin - Ein Gedi and Jericho. The plant, also known as balsam, was renowned for the expensive perfume that was produced from it, as well as for exceptional medicinal properties that were attributed to its sap, wood, bark, and seeds. This article presents the historical sources describing these health-related properties and preliminary laboratory studies demonstrating the pharmacological effects of balsam sap. Investigations of the antimicrobial activity of C. gileadensis showed the plant sap inhibitory effect against Bacillus cereus and the blocking of Pseudomonas aeruginosa lectins. These results corroborate the historical sources crediting the usefulness of balsam sap as an antiseptic agent.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)516-520
Number of pages5
JournalAfrican Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2010


  • Antimicrobial effects
  • Balsam
  • Commiphora gileadensis
  • Perfume
  • Resin


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