The biosynthesis, biological activity, and ecological significance of secondary metabolites (natural products) are examined in this book. All the major classes of secondary metabolites are considered, according to the basic 'building blocks' from which they are derived. Examples are given of compounds found in insects, plants, and microorganisms; and the pharmacological and toxicological properties are highlighted. In the final chapter, the possible ecological significance of secondary metabolites is explored, and this feature is of increasing interest to all those who study natural products. For this second edition special mention has been made of the isolation and characterization of the enzymes of secondary metabolism; and of the new NMR techniques which have revolutionized the elucidation of biosynthetic pathways.
"Will be of great interest to those biochemists and biologists who are concerned with the chemistry of life processes, particularly with the advances of the last decade or so....This is a well written textbook that has concise focused coverage, excellent chemical structures and pathways, and up-to-date suggestions for further reading keyed to each chapter. What I particularly liked were the brief historical and biological explanations given before each major metabolic group was discussed. This help put each type of compound into proper perspective with respect to general importance and motivation for doing the research." --The Quarterly Review of Biology
"Extremely authoritative, concise, and up-to-date. . . Beautifully organized and copiously illustrated." --Biochemical Journal
"An excellent account . . . May be recommended to all interested in natural product chemistry." --Biochemical Education
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