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Phytochemistry Reviews

, Volume 18, Issue 3, pp 601–622 | Cite as

The landscape of natural product diversity and their pharmacological relevance from a focus on the Dictionary of Natural Products®

  • François ChassagneEmail author
  • Guillaume Cabanac
  • Gilles Hubert
  • Bruno David
  • Guillaume Marti
Article

Abstract

Nature is considered a prolific source of diverse biologically active chemotypes. While most reviews have focused on the characteristics of the chemical backbones of natural products (NPs), few have tried to provide an overview of their origins (the living organisms in which they are produced), chemical classes, and biological activities. This review discusses the current knowledge on NP diversity by focusing on the Dictionary of Natural Products® (DNP). We datamined the 300,000 NPs covered by the DNP to reveal relevant, albeit dormant, knowledge about NP diversity. This holistic picture of NPs allows us to discuss the most abundant biological sources of NPs investigated in relation to their chemical features and biological activities. In a nutshell, a large part of NPs originated from plants (67%), especially from the Compositae and Leguminosae families. Among all kingdoms, NPs isolated from Streptomyces spp. were largely represented, while terpenoids and alkaloids were the two most represented chemical classes. Out of all NPs documented, only 3882 were reported to be bioactive (1163 from plants and 1006 from bacteria), with antibacterial, antibiotics, and antineoplastic agents being the most frequent therapeutic classes. In this paper, we also address the advantages and limitations of NP research from a pharmaceutical industry perspective. This work will provide useful insights and guidance to researchers involved in drug discovery from NPs.

Keywords

Biological activity Drug discovery Genetic resources Pharmaceutical industry Plants 

Abbreviations

ACE

Angiotensin converting enzyme

CAS

Chemical abstracts services

DNP

Dictionary of Natural Products®

HTS

High throughput screening

NP

Natural product

PSK

Polysaccharide krestin

PSP

Polysaccharopeptide

Notes

Acknowledgements

We would like to thank the French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development (IRD) documentation service for subscribing to the DNP. We would also like to thank Fiona Macdonald, Taylor and Francis group, for the clarifications she provided concerning the information given in the DNP.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

11101_2019_9606_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (171 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 170 kb)

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center for the Study of Human HealthEmory UniversityAtlantaUSA
  2. 2.UMR 5505, CNRS, Computer Science Department, Informatics Research Institute of Toulouse (IRIT)Université Toulouse 3 – Paul SabatierToulouseFrance
  3. 3.Green Mission Pierre FabreInstitut de Recherche Pierre FabreToulouseFrance
  4. 4.PharmaDev, UMR 152 IRDUniversité Toulouse 3 – Paul SabatierToulouseFrance

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