Plants are an important source of chemically diverse natural products that target microtubules, one of the most successful targets in cancer therapy. Colchicine, paclitaxel, and vinca alkaloids are the earliest plant-derived microtubule-targeting agents (MTAs), and paclitaxel and vinca alkaloids are currently important drugs used in the treatment of cancer. Several additional plant-derived compounds that act on microtubules with improved anticancer activity are at varying stages of development. Here, we move beyond the well-discussed paclitaxel and vinca alkaloids to present other promising plant-derived MTAs with potential for development as anticancer agents. Various biological and biochemical aspects are discussed. We hope that the review will provide guidance for further exploration and identification of more effective, novel MTAs derived from plant sources.
- Microtubule destabilizing agents
- Microtubule stabilizing agents
- Microtubule-targeting agents
- Tubulin binding site
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research