Camptothecin (CPT) and its derivatives comprise an important group of heterocyclic compounds that are well
recognized for their anticancer activities. Efforts have been made over the years aiming to develop new CPT analogs
with better clinical efficacy, improved pharmacokinetic profile and lower toxicity. First generation of analogs, irinotecan
(CPT-11) and topotecan (TPT) was approved for use by FDA in 1996 for the treatment of colorectal (CPT-11) and
cervical, ovarian and small lung cancers (TPT). Other analogs of CPT are currently in different phases of clinical trials.
As CPT represents an important lead compound in the field of antitumor- research, in this review we will highlight some
recent discoveries (2008-2013) on the development of novel camptothecin-based compounds as potential anticancer agents.
Keywords: Camptothecin, cancer, drugs, homocamptothecin, irinotecan, topoisomerase inhibitors, topotecan.
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