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Apple Mint

A plant with leaves

Description automatically generated with low confidence
This image of Apple Mint is from Ernst Hallier in Flora von Deutschland, 1884.  
Books covering the history of medicinal plants are available in the John R. Martin Rare Book Room in Hardin Library for the Health Sciences. 

Apple Mint (Mentha suaveolens)

Mentha suaveolens, native to southern and central Europe, is a rhizomatous, herbaceous perennial in the pervasive namesake genus of the Mint Family. It is commonly used as a flavoring for teas and food. It grows in humid environments, usually along streams (Božović et al., 2015). Apple mint is an important element of traditional Mediterranean medicine with a wide range of uses. Its leaves and essential oil extracts were used to treat gastrointestinal problems and the symptoms of respiratory illness, as well as for their anticonvulsive, antiseptic, and insecticide effects (Moreno et al., 2002). Today it is used as an anti-inflammatory, analgesic, cytotoxic, antioxidant, hepatoprotective (liver), and antifungal agent (Ayaz et al., 2020). 

Latest Research

  • Mentha suaveolens Ehrh. (Lamiaceae) Essential Oil and Its Main Constituent Piperitenone Oxide: Biological Activities and Chemistry
    by Mijat Božović on May 19, 2015 at 10:00 am

    Since herbal medicines play an important role in the treatment of a wide range of diseases, there is a growing need for their quality control and standardization. Mentha suaveolens Ehrh. (MS) is an aromatic herb with fruit and a spearmint flavor, used in the Mediterranean areas as a traditional medicine. It has an extensive range of biological activities, including cytotoxic, antimicrobial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, hypotensive and insecticidal properties, among others. This study aims to…

  • In vitro inhibition of herpes simplex virus type 1 replication by Mentha suaveolens essential oil and its main component piperitenone oxide
    by Livia Civitelli on March 18, 2014 at 10:00 am

    Several essential oils exert in vitro activity against bacteria and viruses and, among these latter, herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) is known to develop resistance to commonly used antiviral agents. Thus, the effects of the essential oil derived from Mentha suaveolens (EOMS) and its active principle piperitenone oxide (PEO) were tested in in vitro experimental model of infection with HSV-1. The 50% inhibitory concentration (IC50) was determined at 5.1μg/ml and 1.4μg/ml for EOMS and PEO,…

  • Beneficial effect of Mentha suaveolens essential oil in the treatment of vaginal candidiasis assessed by real-time monitoring of infection
    by Donatella Pietrella on March 2, 2011 at 11:00 am

    CONCLUSIONS: This study shows for the first time that the essential oil of a Moroccan plant Mentha suaveolens is candidastatic and candidacidal in vitro, and has a degree of anticandidal activity in a model of vaginal infection, as demonstrated in an in vivo monitoring imaging system. We conclude that our findings lay the ground for further, more extensive investigations to identify the active EOMS component(s), promising in the therapeutically problematic setting of chronic vaginal candidiasis…

  • Antibacterial and antifungal activity of essential oils of Mentha suaveolens
    by H Oumzil on November 30, 2002 at 11:00 am

    The essential oils (EO) of Mentha suaveolens, a wild Labiatae, which grows in several regions in Morocco, were characterized and their antimicrobial activity assessed. The main aromatic constituents of this plant, as characterized by IR, NMR and MS studies, were pulegone, piperitenone oxide (PEO) and piperitone oxide (PO) occurring in different amounts depending on the subspecies. These constituents as well as a series of other aromatic products such as carvone, limonene and menthone, were…

  • Pharmacological properties of the methanol extract from Mentha suaveolens Ehrh
    by Lucrecia Moreno on April 5, 2002 at 11:00 am

    The present study analyses the pharmacological activity in in vivo and in vitro models of the methanol extract obtained from the leaves and steams of Menta suaveolens Ehrh. This extract lacked toxicity, but exhibited a central nervous system depressant action; an analgesic effect in models of chemical and mechanical stimulation suggesting the induction of a peripheral analgesic response. The extract also exhibited an antiinflammatory action inhibiting the rat paw oedema induced by carrageenin….


Ayaz, A., Zaman, W., Ullah, F., Saqib, S., Jamshed, S., Bahadur, S., Shakoor, A., & Arshad, B. (2020). Systematics study through scanning electron microscopy; a tool for the authentication of herbal drug Mentha suaveolens Ehrh. Microsc Res Tech, 83(1), 81-87.  

Božović, M., Pirolli, A., & Ragno, R. (2015). Mentha suaveolens Ehrh. (Lamiaceae) essential oil and its main constituent piperitenone oxide: biological activities and chemistry. Molecules, 20(5), 8605-8633.  

Moreno, L., Bello, R., Primo-Yúfera, E., & Esplugues, J. (2002). Pharmacological properties of the methanol extract from Mentha suaveolens Ehrh. Phytother Res, 16 Suppl 1, S10-13.