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Chem Biodivers. 2005 May;2(5):569-90.

Biotransformation of terpenoids by mammals, microorganisms, and plant-cultured cells.

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Environmental Chemistry Laboratory, Hiroshima Institute of Technology, 2-1-1 Miyake, Saeki-ku, Hiroshima-shi, Hiroshima 731-5193, Japan.


This review article summarizes our knowledge of the metabolism of mono- and sesquiterpenoids in mammals, microorganisms, cloned-insect enzymes, and plant-cultured cells. A number of unusual enzymatic reactions and products are reported such as the stereoselective formation of primary alcohols from sterically congested Me2C groups. Such enzymatic processes, including unknown chemical transformations under abiotic conditions, could lead to the discovery of new chemical reactions and might be helpful in the design of new drugs. The transformations of the following mono- and sesquiterpenoids (in alphabetical order) are discussed: (+)-(1R)-aromadendrene (61), (-)-allo-aromadendrene (62), (+/-)-camphene (21), (-)-cis-carane (20), (+)-3-carene (17), (+/-)-carvone (27), (-)-beta-caryophyllene (43), (+)-cedrol (35), cuminaldehyde (25), (+)-curdione (69), (-)-cyclocolorenone (60), (-)-elemol (51), (2E,6E)-farnesol (31), germacrone (67), ginsenol (40), (-)-globulol (63), isoprobotryan-9alpha-ol (82a), juvenile hormone III (33), (+)-ledol (65), (+)-longifolene (46), myrcene (3), (-)-myrtenal (23), (+)-nootkatone (48), patchouli alcohol (37), (-)-perillaldehyde (24), (-)-alpha- and beta-pinene (8 and 9), alpha-santalol (28), (-)-6beta-santonin (83a), 6beta-tetrahydrosantonin (83b), beta-selinene (57), alpha-thujone (26a), beta-thujone (26b), T-2 toxin (87), and valerianol (53).

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