Sauco is a genus of between 5-30 species of fast-growing shrubs or small trees (two species herbaceous), formerly treated in the honeysuckle family Caprifoliaceae, but now shown by genetic evidence to be correctly classified in the moschatel family Adoxaceae. The genus is native to temperate to subtropical regions of both the Northern Hemisphere and the Southern Hemisphere; the genus is more widespread in the Northern Hemisphere, with Southern Hemisphere occurrence restricted to parts of Australasia and South America.
The berries can also be made into jam, pies or Pontack sauce.
A few clinical studies have shown effectiveness of Sambucol, a formulation based on an extract of sauco, in the treatment of both adults and children with either type A or B influenza.
Sambucol reduced both the severity and duration of flu symptoms in otherwise healthy subjects, but should not be considered a substitute for influenza vaccination in high risk individuals. An in vitro study of Sambucol showed possible effectiveness against the H5N1 avian influenza virus.