Manzamines: A potential for novel cures


Manzamines are a unique class of β-carboline marine alkaloids with an unusual tetra- or pentacyclic system. These alkaloids have shown a variety of bioactivities against infectious diseases, cancer and inflammatory diseases. The greatest potential for the manzamine alkaloids appears to be against malaria, with improved potency relative to chloroquine and artemisinin. Over 80 manzamine-related alkaloids have been isolated from more than 16 species of marine sponges belonging to five families distributed from the Red Sea to Indonesia, which suggests a possible microbial origin for manzamine alkaloids. The current review summarizes marine literature, focusing on the biological activities of manzamines, the possible microbial origin of this class of compounds and the Red Sea as a possible source of manzamines from biosynthetic gene clusters of Red Sea microbes.

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Manzamines: A potential for novel cures