Resveratrol is a nutraceutical with several therapeutic effects. It has been shown to mimic
effects of caloric restriction, exert anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidative effects, and affect the
initiation and progression of many diseases through several mechanisms. While there is a
wealth of in vitro and in vivo evidence that resveratrol could be a promising therapeutic
agent, clinical trials must confirm its potential. In this work, we reviewed the current clinical
data available regarding the pharmacological action of resveratrol. Most of the clinical trials
of resveratrol have focused on cancer, neurological disorders, cardiovascular diseases,
diabetes, and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). We found that for neurological
disorders, cardiovascular diseases, and diabetes, the current clinical trials show that
resveratrol was well tolerated and beneficially influenced disease biomarkers. However
resveratrol had ambiguous and sometimes even detrimental effects in certain types of cancers
and in NAFLD. In most of the clinical trials, the major obstacle presented was resveratrol’s
poor bioavailability. Thus, this work provides useful considerations for the planning and
design of future pre-clinical and clinical research on resveratrol.
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