Current Medicinal Chemistry

Atta-ur-Rahman, FRS
Honorary Life Fellow
Kings College
University of Cambridge


β-Carboline Alkaloids: Biochemical and Pharmacological Functions

Author(s): Rihui Cao, Wenlie Peng, Zihou Wang and Anlong Xu

Affiliation: Guangdong Key Laboratory for Pharmaceutical Functional Genes and Center for Biopharmaceutical Research, College of Life Sciences, Sun Yat-sen (Zhongshan) University, Guangzhou 510275, P.R. China.


β-Carboline alkaloids are a large group of natural and synthetic indole alkaloids with different degrees of aromaticity, some of which are widely distributed in nature, including various plants, foodstuffs, marine creatures, insects, mammalians as well as human tissues and body fluids. These compounds are of great interest due to their diverse biological activities. Particularly, these compounds have been shown to intercalate into DNA, to inhibit CDK, Topisomerase, and monoamine oxidase, and to interact with benzodiazepine receptors and 5-hydroxy serotonin receptors. Furthermore, these chemicals also demonstrated a broad spectrum of pharmacological properties including sedative, anxiolytic, hypnotic, anticonvulsant, antitumor, antiviral, antiparasitic as well as antimicrobial activities. In this review, we summerized the biochemical and pharmacological functions of β-carboline alkaloids.

Keywords: Reviews, β-carbolines, biochemical, pharmacological, structrue-activity relationship

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Article Details

Page: [479 - 500]
Pages: 22
DOI: 10.2174/092986707779940998
Price: $58