Overview of bioactive fungal secondary metabolites: cytotoxic and antimicrobial compounds

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Microorganisms are known as important sources of natural compounds that have been studied and applied for different purposes in distinct areas. Specifically, in the pharmaceutical area, fungi have been explored mainly as sources of antibiotics, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, enzyme inhibitors, hypercholesteremic, antineoplastic/antitumor, immunomodulators, and immunosuppressants agents. However, historically, the high demand for new antimicrobial and antitumor agents has not been sufficiently attended by the drug discovery process, highlighting the relevance of intensifying studies to reach sustainable employment of the huge world biodiversity, including the microorganisms. Therefore, this review describes the main approaches and tools applied in the search for bioactive secondary metabolites, as well as presents several examples of compounds produced by different fungi species with proven pharmacological effects and additional examples of fungal cytotoxic and antimicrobial molecules. The review does not cover all fungal secondary metabolites already described; however, it presents some reports that can be useful at any phase of the drug discovery process, mainly for pharmaceutical applications.
Conrado R, Gomes TC, Roque GSC, Souza AO. Overview of bioactive fungal secondary metabolites: cytotoxic and antimicrobial compounds. Antibiotics. 2022 Nov; 11(11):1604. doi:10.3390/antibiotics11111604.
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