Special Issue "Bioactivity-focused Semi-synthesis in Drug Discovery"


A special issue of Molecules (ISSN 1420-3049).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 October 2013)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Dr. Attila Hunyadi
Institute of Pharmacognosy, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Szeged, Eötvös u. 6, 6720 Szeged, Hungary
Website: http://www2.pharm.u-szeged.hu/phcogweb/images/cv/hunyadi_cv_hu.pdf
Phone: +3662546456
Fax: +3662545704
Interests: natural product chemistry, including isolation, structure elucidation and semi-synthetic modification of bioactive plant constituents, primarily of ecdysteroids and flavonoids; natural compounds of potential anticancer or multi-drug resistance decreasing activity; compounds, that exert selective activity against MDR cancer; bioactivity-focused semi-synthesis of natural compounds

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Thanks to millions of years of co-evolution between micro-organisms, plants and animals, Nature is a treasure mine of small molecules with potential for therapeutic drug discovery. By providing highly complex patterns of interactions with the various biochemical processes of other organisms, many secondary plant metabolites are easily recognized for their crucial role in the plants’ adaptation to their environment. An overview of which sources have yielded newly approved drugs the past 30 years clearly shows the success of utilizing Nature’s chemical complexity (Newman & Cragg 2012) inasmuch as the majority of these new drugs originated from a natural source or were designed on the basis of natural scaffolds. Dominancy of Nature-originated compounds is particularly true for antibacterial and anticancer drugs. On the other hand, very few natural leads pass through the drug development process per se. Various semi-synthetic modifications or designing synthetic analogs are usually needed for optimizing activity profile and bioavailability, and for decreasing unwanted side-effects and toxicity in order to meet the strict criteria for a modern therapeutic agent.
The present special issue of Molecules is dedicated to outstanding research and review papers within the scope of natural product based drug discovery via semi-synthetic approaches. Communications of any chemical modification of natural products are considered for publication as long as bioactivity is the focus of the work: manuscripts reporting optimization of pharmacodynamic and/or pharmacokinetic properties, decreasing toxicity, preparation of pro-drugs or even changing the biological target(s) of natural products are welcome. Preparation and investigation of semi-synthetic compound libraries from chemically engineered extracts is considered as an emerging area of the field which certainly also falls within the scope of this issue. Manuscripts may review reactions of certain typical natural scaffolds, biological significance of the products, or options that introduce selected moieties onto various natural skeletons in order to influence bioactivity. Authors of review papers are kindly requested to make a pre-submission inquiry with a brief outline to the guest editor.

Dr. Attila Hunyadi
Guest Editor


Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. Papers will be published continuously (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are refereed through a peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Molecules is an international peer-reviewed Open Access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs).


  • natural product based drug discovery
  • rational drug design
  • biomedical engineering
  • isolation and chemical modification
  • semi-synthesis
  • bioactivity optimization
  • side-effect profile improvement
  • toxicity decrease
  • pharmacodynamics
  • pharmacokinetics
  • ADME
  • bioavailability
  • pro-drug

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Displaying article 1-3
p. 2061-2076
by , , , , , , , , ,  and
Molecules 2014, 19(2), 2061-2076; doi:10.3390/molecules19022061
Received: 9 December 2013 / Revised: 29 January 2014 / Accepted: 6 February 2014 / Published: 17 February 2014
Show/Hide Abstract | Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (453 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bioactivity-focused Semi-synthesis in Drug Discovery)
p. 2077-2088
by , ,  and
Molecules 2014, 19(2), 2077-2088; doi:10.3390/molecules19022077
Received: 31 October 2013 / Revised: 21 January 2014 / Accepted: 29 January 2014 / Published: 17 February 2014
Show/Hide Abstract | Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (506 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bioactivity-focused Semi-synthesis in Drug Discovery)
p. 15255-15275
by , , , , , , ,  and
Molecules 2013, 18(12), 15255-15275; doi:10.3390/molecules181215255
Received: 31 October 2013 / Revised: 30 November 2013 / Accepted: 2 December 2013 / Published: 10 December 2013
Show/Hide Abstract | Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (357 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bioactivity-focused Semi-synthesis in Drug Discovery)
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Last update: 16 May 2013

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