Background: This review is intended to draw the attention of pharmaceutical and biotechnological
communities to the untapped potential of the Scutellaria genus. Skullcaps, as they are more
widely known, are found in one of the oldest materia medica in the world, that of ancient Chinese
pharmacology, and their numerous wide range of medicinal bioactivities have been studied both in
vivo and in vitro. For thousands of years, chemical compounds from the Scutellaria species have been
safely used as antitumor, antibacterial, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant or hepatoprotective
Objective: As these effects are well known, reflected in the presence of Scutellaria plants in national
pharmacopoeias, it is clear that the plant has yet enormous unexploited potential. The European pharmacological
market has turned to the resources of Scutellaria only in the last two decades, and although
the construction and clinical processing of a new drug is a long process, the general impression
is that very few medical products in pharmacies have been inspired by the phytochemistry of skullcaps.
Conclusion: This paper presents the current state of knowledge on the wealth of Scutellaria chemical
compounds with treatment applications, its tissue culture and biotechnological achievements, especially
in the context of the production of secondary metabolites.