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J Nat Prod. 2009 Mar 27;72(3):588-603. doi: 10.1021/np800817y.

A selective account of effective paradigms and significant outcomes in the discovery of inspirational marine natural products.

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Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of California Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, California 95064, USA.


Marine natural products continue to be a source of significant molecular structures that serve as a stimulus to seed further significant research. This account reviews some of the major advances in the study of marine biomolecules made at UC Santa Cruz over more than three decades. The continuing challenge of discovery and characterization of what we term "inspirational molecular structures" will be presented in a comprehensive fashion. Examples of privileged molecular structures and their impact on biomedicinal research will be an important theme. The three major groups of organisms explored include seaweeds, sponges, and marine-derived fungi, and the study of their active principles has greatly benefited from synergistic collaborations with both academic and biopharmaceutical groups. The concluding sections of this chronicle will touch on prospects for future outcomes involving new sources and strategies.

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