Biotechnology and Molecular Biology Reviews

  • Abbreviation: Biotechnol. Mol. Biol. Rev.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1538-2273
  • DOI: 10.5897/BMBR
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 101


Anti-malarials from marine sponges.

S. Ravichandran1*, K. Kathiresan1 and Hemalatha Balaram2
1Centre of Advanced Study in Marine Biology (Annamalai University),Parangipettai – 608 502, India. 2Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, Jakkur, Bangalore- 560 064, India.
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 01 May 2007
  •  Published: 31 May 2007


Malaria, which is caused by multiplication of the protozoan parasite Plasmodium falciparum in erythrocytes, is a major health problem in many southern countries.  There is an urgent need to discover new antimalarials, due to the spread of chloroquinine resistance and the limited number of available drugs. Among marine invertebrates, Porifera (sponges) are potential source of novel bioactive compounds to provide future drugs against malaria, cancer and a range of viral diseases. A number of sponge-derived antimalarials have been discovered during the last decade. The compounds are mostly nitrogen containing ones (proteins, pyridines, tyrosine-based metabolites, alkaloids, indoles and amides) and also non-nitrogenous compounds (terpenes, polyketides and polysaccharides).


Key words:  Malaria, Plasmodium falciparum, porifera, marine sponges, bioactive compounds, antimalarial compounds.