Taking a closer look at aloe vera

Aloe vera, used for centuries all around the world for its healing properties, is increasingly being studied using modern scientific methods.

Update on aloe vera risk management activity in the European Union

US botanical sales top $8 billion, notch 8.5% growth ABC report says

Aloe continues to be among the top-sellers

Sales of herbal dietary supplements increased 8.5% in 2017, reaching $8 billion, according to a new report by the American Botanical Council. It was the strongest growth since before the 2008-2009 financial crash.

August 2018 Inside Aloe

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December 2017 Inside Aloe

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German risk agency rules whole-leaf Aloe preparations containing anthranoids are not suitable for use in foods or supplements

Ruling due to suspicion that plant-based anthranoids have a carcinogenic effect in humans

The Aloe genus comprises approximately 250 species of succulent dry climate plants (xerophytes). The best known species is Aloe barbadensis (syn. Aloe vera), the inner leaf pulp of which has many uses in the food and cosmetics sector as Aloe vera gel. 

In addition to Aloe barbadensis, however, other Aloe species are used for many different purposes. Inter alia, the sap of the pressed, whole, unpeeled leaves of Aloe arborescens (krantz aloe, candelabra aloe) is marketed in the form of food supplements. The German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) has assessed the possible health risks of such food supplements. The outer layers of the leaves of Aloe arborescens are of toxicological relevance. As with all Aloe species, these layers contain plant-based anthranoids which have long been suspected of having a genotoxic and carcinogenic effect. In addition to data on the pure substances, tests have also been conducted in the meantime on anthranoid-containing preparations made from Aloe leaves. The results of these long-term studies also confirm the suspicion of carcinogenicity, but there are data gaps which should be closed with regard to the details and mechanisms of cancer development.

AOAC Call for Methods: Quantitation of Aloe vera

August 21, 2017 [Rockville, MD] - AOAC INTERNATIONAL invites method authors and developers to submit relevant methods that may meet the AOAC Standard Method Performance Requirements® (SMPR®) quantitation of aloe vera characteristic water-soluble main constituents in dietary supplements (AOAC SMPR 2017.009). Submitted methods will be reviewed by an AOAC Expert Review Panel for consideration of AOAC First Action Official MethodsSM status. Methods adopted as AOAC First Action Official MethodsSM by the Expert Review Panel will be published by AOAC INTERNATIONAL.



The objective of this call for methods is to collect relevant methods that may meet one or more of the aforementioned SMPR, which has been approved by the AOAC Stakeholder Panel on Dietary Supplements (SPDS). All submitted methods will be subjected to evaluation by an AOAC Expert Review Panel (ERP), who will review them for potential AOAC First Action Official MethodsSM status. Any resulting approved/adopted Official Methods of Analysis may be used as a reference method. Acceptable methods must demonstrate that they meet one of the aforementioned SMPR, therefore, being reliable and reproducible when used by trained analysts in accredited laboratories. 



Quantitation of characteristic water-soluble aloe vera main constituents and degradation products, as per AOAC SMPR 2017.009. Please see SMPR for technical details. Any analytical technique(s) that measures the analytes of interest and meets the method performance requirements in AOAC SMPR 2017.009 will be considered. 

UA-Invented Sunscreen Licensed to Leading World Aloe Vera Supplier

Tucson, Ariz. – The University of Arizona has licensed a new non-penetrating sunscreen to MexiAloe Laboratorios, S.A. de C.V., a subsidiary of Novamex.

The novel formulation binds oxybenzone – the active ingredient in most over-the-counter sunscreens – in such a way so that it does not seep into the skin. Douglas Loy,  a professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry in the colleges of Science and Medicine-Tucson, worked with graduate student Stephanie Tolbert to develop the formulation.

Blocking the absorption of oxybenzone into skin would help resolve public concern over the use of the compound which filters out ultraviolet light and is used in many commercial topical sunscreens. The American Association of Dermatology says oxybenzone is safe, but public concerns have been raised about its effects when absorbed by users.


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