Journal of
Medicinal Plants Research

  • Abbreviation: J. Med. Plants Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1996-0875
  • DOI: 10.5897/JMPR
  • Start Year: 2007
  • Published Articles: 3743

Full Length Research Paper

Effect of Withania somnifera in the treatment of male infertility: A literature review

Maria Yasmin Paz Teixeira
  • Maria Yasmin Paz Teixeira
  • Programa de Pós-Graduação em Nutrição e Saúde, Universidade Estadual do Ceará (UECE), Av. Dr. Silas Munguba 1700, 60714-903, Fortaleza, Ceará, Brasil.
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Camilla Oliveira Duarte de Araujo
  • Camilla Oliveira Duarte de Araujo
  • Departamento de Fisiologia - Disciplina de Fisiologia da Nutrição, Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP), Rua Botucatu, 862 - 2o andar - Ed. Ciências Biomédicas - Vila Clementino – S/N São Paulo, São Paulo, Brasil.
  • Google Scholar

  •  Received: 31 July 2019
  •  Accepted: 28 October 2019
  •  Published: 30 November 2019


The high prevalence of male infertility associated with the high costs of its conventional treatment motivated researchers to look for alternative approaches to the treatment of sexual dysfunction. The use of medicinal plants for these fins has been adopted in Withania somnifera which is one of the plants that has been associated with improvements in male fertility. Thus, the aim of this study was to review data available in the literature on the effect of W. somnifera in the treatment of male infertility. The Pubmed, Lilacs and Medline databases from 2009 to 2019 were searched and 9 articles selected, including intervention articles, systematic review and meta-analysis. Also known as Aswagandha or "Indian Ginseng", the part of W. somnifera most used in treating infertility is the root, mainly in the form of extract. It acts through two mechanisms: "oxidative" and "non-oxidative", both associated with improved sperm count, motility and morphology. However, further studies should be conducted investigating isolated phytochemicals to verify their true functionality.

Key words: Male infertility, male sexual disorders, Withania somnifera.