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Medicinal Chemistry Perspectives of Trioxanes and Tetraoxanes

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Trioxane based compounds such as artemisinin and its synthetic and semi-synthetic analogues constitute promising class of antimalarial agents. The pharmaceutical development of artemisinin was started in 1971 after the isolation from Chinese medicinal plant Artemisia annua and this compound has drawn much attention from medical chemist and pharmacologist worldwide. Researchers from across the globe have independently and collaboratively conducted various studies on the artemisinin system in an attempt to identify lead molecules for malaria chemotherapy. This systematic study led to the discovery of artemether, arteether, dihydroartemisinin, and sodium artesunate which are being used as antimalarial drug for the treatment of Plasmodium falciparum related infections. These studies also revealed that the trioxane bridge is essential for the antimalarial activity of this class of compounds. Another class of structurally simple peroxides that emerged from these studies was the 1,2,4,5-tetraoxanes. Some of the tetraoxane based compounds have shown promising antimalarial potential, and much of work has been done on this type of compound in recent years. Apart from their antimalarial activity, these classes of compounds have also shown promising anticancer and antibacterial activity. To this end, an attempt has been made to describe the medicinal potential of trioxane and tetraoxane-based compounds. Literature from 1999 has been critically reviewed and an attempt has been made to discuss structure activity relationship study among the series of trioxane and tetraoxane based compounds.

Keywords: Antimalarial; Plasmodium falciparum; Trioxane based compounds; antibacterial activity; artemisinin; chemotherapy; chloroquine; collaboratively; semi-synthetic analogues; tetraoxanes

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: September 1, 2011

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  • Current Medicinal Chemistry covers all the latest and outstanding developments in medicinal chemistry and rational drug design. Each issue contains a series of timely in-depth reviews written by leaders in the field covering a range of the current topics in medicinal chemistry. Current Medicinal Chemistry is an essential journal for every medicinal chemist who wishes to be kept informed and up-to-date with the latest and most important developments.

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