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Recent Trends in the Pharmacological Activity of Isoprenyl Phenolics

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A number of prenylated phenols, mainly flavonoids, have been identified as active constituents of medicinal plants. Due to their beneficial effects on human health, this class of compounds has received a great deal of attention, not only from the pharmaceutical industry, but also from other areas of applied sciences, including the food, brewing, and cosmetics industries. The addition of prenyl residues through the activity of isoprenyltransferases, the key biosynthetic enzymes for these plant metabolites, endows flavonoids with a variety of biological activities, mostly due to improved interaction with membranes and proteins. The role of prenylated flavonoids in plants correlates with their activities as antioxidant or anti-infectious agents. In connection with these effects, these compounds have been evaluated for multiple potential uses, e.g. as antibacterial, antiprotozoal, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antitumor, estrogenic, antidiabetic, or antithrombotic agents, among others. The present review, in principle focused on phenolic derivatives containing a non-cyclized isoprenyl chain, discusses the most relevant pharmacological reports for the period 2005-2012.

Keywords: Apoptosis; cytotoxicity; diabetes; flavonoids; hydroquinones; inflammation; osteoporosis; plant estrogens; prenyl phenolics; resorcinols

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2013

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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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