Special Issue "Phytotoxins: Chemistry, Bioactivity and Potential Practical Applications"
A special issue of Toxins (ISSN 2072-6651).
Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 July 2011)
Prof. Dr. Antonio Evidente
Dipartimento di Scienze del Suolo, della Pianta, dell`Ambiente e delle Produzioni Animali, Universita` di Napoli Federico II, Via Universita` 100, 80055 Portici, Italy
Phytotoxins are secondary metabolites produced by phytopathogenic microrganisms playing an important role in plant disease development. The chemical nature of these metabolites range from low molecular weight compounds, including all classes of natural products as terpenes, chromanones, butenolides, pyrones, macrolides, aromatic derivatives, amino acids etc., to high molecular weight compounds as proteins, glycoproteins and polysaccharides.
The serious disease induced by both phytopathogenic fungi and bacteria on agrarian as well as on ornamental and forestall plants with consequent heavy losses and damages to the agriculture and environmental patrimony, have prompted multisciplinary studies involving plant pathologists and physiologists as well as natural substance chemists. These studies, which are aimed to know the mechanisms of pathogenesis and to find an environmental friendly control of plant disease, have carried out to the isolation and chemical and biological characterization of several non-host and few host specific phytotoxins.
Several phytotoxins, at various concentrations have showed also different interesting biological activities including antimicrobial, herbicidal and also pharmacological properties. The isolation and chemical characterization of phytotoxins have given an important contribute, together with epidemiological, morphological and biochemical studied, to the correct classification of the microrganism producer. Furthermore, the isolation of toxin natural analogues as well as the preparation of chemical derivatives have allowed to carry out structure-activity relationships investigation and studies on their mode of action, while very few attempts have made to realize simple, convenient and enantioselective syntheses of phytotoxins, and this is frequently due to their structural complexity.
However, the interesting biological activities of phytotoxins as well their potential practical application in different fields also have prompted studies for their large scale production through the selection of the best fungal or bacterial strain and growth conditions. Furthermore, studies were also carried out for the development of methods, including HPLC, GC or LC/MS, UV, ionic chromatography, immunochemistry, for the rapid and specific analysis of the toxins in complex samples.
Prof. Dr. Antonio Evidente
- phytopathogenic fungi and bacteria
- plant disease
- chemical and biological properties