Natural products serve as biodegradable crop protection and pharmaceutical agents

Natural extracts from indigenous plants typically contain multicomponent mixtures of active ingredients that have multi-point interactions with the complex biological system.

This makes identification of the active compounds and their mechanism of action challenging.

Studies on combined use of natural products have demonstrated its effectiveness in pest management and treatment of diseases.

However, far less studies have attempted to elucidate the active structures and their mode of action.

In the research group, biological assays are used to identify active extracts, and after compound purification using bioassay guided isolation, identification is done using a combination of spectroscopic techniques.

If the active compounds are not commercially available or their purification cannot easily be scaled up, (semi)synthesis is envisaged.

Natural products are developed which could serve as valuable and biodegradable crop protecting agents (e.g. insecticidal) and pharmaceutical agents (antiplasmodial, antidiabetic).


Prof. Sven Mangelinckx