Marine fungi represent a huge potential for new natural products and an increased number of new metabolites have become known over the past years, while much of the hidden potential still needs to be uncovered. Representative examples of biodiversity studies of marine fungi and of natural products from a diverse selection of marine fungi from the author’s lab are highlighting important aspects of this research. If one considers the huge phylogenetic diversity of marine fungi and their almost ubiquitous distribution, and realizes that most of the published work on secondary metabolites of marine fungi has focused on just a few genera, strictly speaking Penicillium
and maybe also Fusarium
, the diversity of marine fungi is not adequately represented in investigations on their secondary metabolites and the less studied species deserve special attention. In addition to results on recently discovered new secondary metabolites of Penicillium
species, the diversity of fungi in selected marine habitats is highlighted and examples of groups of secondary metabolites produced by representatives of a variety of different genera and their bioactivities are presented. Special focus is given to the production of groups of derivatives of metabolites by the fungi and to significant differences in biological activities due to small structural changes.
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