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Special Issue "Structure-Activity Relationship of Natural Products 2018"

A special issue of Molecules (ISSN 1420-3049). This special issue belongs to the section "Natural Products".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 May 2018

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Antonio Evidente

Department of Chemical Sciences, University of Naples “Federico II”, Complesso Universitario Monte S. Angelo, Via Cintia 4, 80126 Napoli, Italy
Website | E-Mail
Interests: organic chemistry; bioactive natural substances; natural product isolation and characterization; spectroscopy; structure–activity relationship studies

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Microbial, plant and terrestrial and marine organisms hold a great deal of promise in biosynthesizing secondary metabolites. These metabolites belong to all the different classes of natural compounds, such as terpenes, phenylpropanoids, polyketides, alkaloids, etc. Thus, these organisms represent a very good source of natural substances, frequently possessing very interesting biological activities with potential applications in different fields. Their practical applications sometimes require an increase in their stability, selectivity, solubility in water, or the best suitable formulation. Studies carried out on the relationship between the chemical structure of a natural compound and its biological activities is an important starting point to obtain information on structural features that are essential for biological activity. Furthermore, the same studies give the necessary information to reach the aims mentioned above for their practical application. All researchers working in the field, are cordially invited to contribute original research papers or reviews to this Special Issue of Molecules, which reports on the structure–activity relationship studies of natural products with different biological activities.

Prof. Dr. Antonio Evidente
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short 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 thoroughly refereed through a single-blind 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). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • natural products
  • source and chemical characterization
  • biological activities
  • chemical modification
  • structure activity relationships (SAR)

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Open AccessArticle Antioxidant and Cytoprotective Effects of the Di-O-Caffeoylquinic Acid Family: The Mechanism, Structure–Activity Relationship, and Conformational Effect
Molecules 2018, 23(1), 222; doi:10.3390/molecules23010222 (registering DOI)
Received: 8 December 2017 / Revised: 6 January 2018 / Accepted: 18 January 2018 / Published: 20 January 2018
PDF Full-text (1069 KB) | Supplementary Files
In this study, a series of di-O-caffeoylquinic acids (di-COQs) were systematically investigated for their antioxidant and cytoprotective effects towards •OH-damaged bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (bmMSCs). Five di-COQs were measured using a set of antioxidant assays. The results show
[...] Read more.
In this study, a series of di-O-caffeoylquinic acids (di-COQs) were systematically investigated for their antioxidant and cytoprotective effects towards •OH-damaged bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (bmMSCs). Five di-COQs were measured using a set of antioxidant assays. The results show that adjacent 4,5-Di-O-caffeoylquinic acid (4,5-COQ) and 3,4-di-O-caffeoylquinic acid (3,4-COQ) always gave lower IC50 values than did non-adjacent di-COQs. In the Fe2+-chelating assay, 4,5-COQ and 3,4-COQ presented greater UV-Vis spectra and darker colors than did non-adjacent di-COQs. In the UPLC-ESI-MS/MS analysis, no corresponding radical adduct formation (RAF) peak was found in the reaction products of di-COQs with PTIO•. In the MTT assay, all di-COQs (especially 1,5-COQ, 1,3-COQ, and 4,5-COQ) dose-dependently increased the cellular viabilities of •OH-damaged bmMSCs. Based on this evidence, we conclude that the five antioxidant di-COQs can protect bmMSCs from •OH-induced damage. Their antioxidant mechanisms may include electron-transfer (ET), H+-transfer, and Fe2+-chelating, except for RAF. Two adjacent di-COQs (4,5-COQ and 3,4-COQ) always possessed a higher antioxidant ability than the non-adjacent di-COQs (1,3-COQ, 1,5-COQ, and 3,5-COQ) in chemical models. However, non-adjacent 1,3-COQ and 1,5-COQ exhibited a higher cytoprotective effect than did adjacent di-COQs. These differences can be attributed to the relative positions of two caffeoyl moieties and, ultimately, to the conformational effect from the cyclohexane skeleton. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Structure-Activity Relationship of Natural Products 2018)
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