Host-Mimetic Metabolomics of Endophytes: Looking Back into the Future

  • Vijay Chandra Verma
  • Satya Prakash
  • Rana Gopal Singh
  • Alan Christopher Gange


Endophytic research is now gaining pace together with the technological advancement and refinements. The phenomenal potential of endophytes as prolific producer of a wide range of bioactive compounds occupies a complimentary domain of natural product research. The discovery of paclitaxel (Taxol) as bioactive natural product of endophytic origin seems to draw indisputable attention not only for their antitumor activity but as potential microbial alternative for this high in-demand drug. Plenty of opinion is given by the enthusiasts on microbial production of paclitaxel as phylogenetic process and driving paradigm of evolution; however, skeptics described it as phylogenetic anomalies. But despite being highly controversial, the horizontal gene transfer (HGT) theory still seems quite justifiable. Let’s have another example: “maytansinoid,” a potent cytotoxic agent, was isolated and characterized from microbial endophyte of the same plant; however in both cases, further investigations recorded their occurrence not only in same host but also from deferent distant hosts and even from different endophytes. So the report of taxane and related taxoids from a taxonomically distant host raises several questions. One may assume that this might be due to evolutionary invention; however, it is very unlikely to accept that all modules of gene responsible for biosynthesis of these molecules invented in microbial systems during long evolutionary symbiosis. With this chapter we are trying to get into the mechanistic aspects of host-specific chemicals synthesized by endophytic microbes together with our experience with isolation and characterization of host-specific compounds like piperine and azadirachtin. Nevertheless, the significance of this potential of endophytes cannot be ignored, as it provides not only alternative source to existing pharmaceuticals but also on the other hand save the valuable biodiversity of highly medicinal plants.


Horizontal Gene Transfer Endophytic Fungus Azadirachta Indica Antimycobacterial Activity Fungal Extract 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



VCV gratefully acknowledges the financial support from University Grant Commission (wide letter No. F. 4-2/2006/13-552/2011/BSR) and Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), New Delhi. VCV is also thankful to the Department of Science and Technology (DST), for the recognition as “Fast track young scientist” (wide letter No.: SERC/LS-515/2011).


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Copyright information

© Springer India 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vijay Chandra Verma
    • 1
  • Satya Prakash
    • 2
  • Rana Gopal Singh
    • 3
  • Alan Christopher Gange
    • 4
  1. 1.Centre of Experimental Medicine and Surgery (CEMS), Institute of Medical SciencesBanaras Hindu UniversityVaranasiIndia
  2. 2.National Facility of Tribal and Herbal Medicine, Institute of Medical SciencesBanaras Hindu UniversityVaranasiIndia
  3. 3.Department of Nephrology, Institute of Medical SciencesBanaras Hindu UniversityVaranasiIndia
  4. 4.School of Biological SciencesRoyal Holloway University of LondonEgham, SurreyUK

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