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Natural Compounds as Anticancer Agents Targeting DNA Topoisomerases

[ Vol. 18 , Issue. 1 ]


Chetan Kumar Jain, Hemanta Kumar Majumder and Susanta Roychoudhury   Pages 75 - 92 ( 18 )


DNA topoisomerases are important cellular enzymes found in almost all types of living cells (eukaryotic and prokaryotic). These enzymes are essential for various DNA metabolic processes e.g. replication, transcription, recombination, chromosomal decatenation etc. These enzymes are important molecular drug targets and inhibitors of these enzymes are widely used as effective anticancer and antibacterial drugs. However, topoisomerase inhibitors have some therapeutic limitations and they exert serious side effects during cancer chemotherapy. Thus, development of novel anticancer topoisomerase inhibitors is necessary for improving cancer chemotherapy. Nature serves as a repertoire of structurally and chemically diverse molecules and in the recent years many DNA topoisomerase inhibitors have been identified from natural sources. The present review discusses anticancer properties and therapeutic importance of eighteen recently identified natural topoisomerase inhibitors (from the year 2009 to 2015). Structural characteristics of these novel inhibitors provide backbones for designing and developing new anticancer drugs.


DNA topoisomerases, Topoisomerase inhibitors, Anticancer agents, Natural products.


Infectious Diseases and Immunology Division, CSIR-Indian Institute of Chemical Biology, 4, Raja S. C. Mullick Road, Jadavpur, Kolkata-700032, India., Division of Research, Saroj Gupta Cancer Centre & Research Institute, M G Road, Thakurpukur, Kolkata- 700 063, India.

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