North America, West Indies, Central America, South America, Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia.
Genera 14, species 125 (2 genera, 4 species in the flora).
Molluginaceae are not of great economic importance. Several species of Glinus and Mollugo are weedy, and occasionally some have been used medicinally or as vegetables (A. L. Bogle 1970b; M. E. Endress and V. Bittrich 1993).
The taxonomic placement of genera of Molluginaceae has been problematic, and they have been considered members of the Aizoaceae, Nyctaginaceae, or Phytolaccaceae. Based on phylogenetic lineages derived from rbcL gene sequences, M. W. Chase et al. (1993) showed that Molluginaceae are distinct from Aizoaceae and a sister group to Nyctaginaceae and Phytolaccaceae. Neither Chase et al. nor J. E. Rodman et al. (1984) found evidence supporting a basal position of Molluginaceae relative to the rest of Centrospermae.