Researchers study molecular elements effective in fighting malaria

The scientists research a building block of organic molecules needed for medical chemistry development. Spirocycles in nature is an element, that chemists are crazy about. This element presents in artemisinin, the most effective group of drugs against malaria.

IKBFU Research Professor, Head of the Institute of Chemistry research group of Saint Petersburg State University, Mikhail Krasavin:

Living plants are a unique source of a wide variety of natural compounds. Vivid examples of the importance of finding and establishing the exact structure of new natural compounds are molecules that eventually became drugs. For example, artemisinin is a drug against malaria, taxol is an anti-cancer drug. Both of these drugs were previously isolated from plants."

According to the scientist, the uniqueness of natural compounds lies in the fact that their "evolution" was parallel to the evolution of all living matter on Earth, which means they are biocompatible.

A review on the building block of organic molecules, the spiro cycle in nature, was published in the scientific journal Molecules. The work "Spirocyclic motifs in natural products" contains not only information about natural sources with such unique molecules, but also their biological properties.

The information structured by us has already inspired us to synthesize new compounds that are naturally interesting for medicinal chemistry and in the near future we will publish new experimental results.

Source:
Journal reference:

Chupakhin, E., et al. (2019) Spirocyclic Motifs in Natural Products. Molecules. doi.org/10.3390/molecules24224165.

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