Record Display for the EPA National Library CatalogRECORD NUMBER: 13 OF 17
|Main Title||Nature's chemicals : the natural products that shaped our world /|
|Publisher||Oxford University Press,|
|ISBN||9780199566839; 0199566836; 9780199603022; 0199603022|
|Subjects||Natural products. ; Bioactive compounds. ; Medicinal plants. ; Microbial products. ; Plants, Medicinal--chemistry. ; Biological Agents--chemistry. ; Plants, Medicinal--microbiology.|
|Collation||ix, 250 pages : illustrations, map, portrait ; 25 cm.|
Includes bibliographical references (pages 219-237) and index.
What are natural products? -- The importance of NPs in human affairs -- The main classes of NPs : only a few pathways lead to the majority of NPs -- Are NPs different from synthetic chemicals? -- Why do organisms make NPs? -- NPs, chemicals and the environment -- Natural products and the pharmaceutical industry -- The chemical interactions between organisms -- The evolution of metabolism -- The genetic modification of NP pathways : possible opportunities and possible pitfalls. Natural Products (NPs) is the term used to describe the hundreds of thousands of chemical compounds or substances that are continually produced by living organisms (plants and microbes). Hundreds of millions of tons of these chemicals are generated annually, and the trade in just a few of these has dominated human economic activity for thousands of years. Indeed the current world geopolitical map has been shaped by attempts to control the supply of a few of these compounds. Every day of our lives each human spends time and money trying to procure the NPs of their choice. However, despite their overwhelming influence on human culture, they remain poorly understood. Yet a knowledge of NPs can help in our search for new drugs, further the debate about GM manipulation, help us address environmental pollution, and enable a better understanding of drug trafficking. This book describes Natural Products (NPs) in an evolutionary context, distilling the few simple principles that govern the way in whicn organisms (including humans) have evolved to produce, cope with, or respond to NPs. It synthesizes a widely dispersed literature and provides a general picture of NPs, encompassing evolutions, history, ecology, and environmental issues (along with some deeper theory relevant to biochemistry), with the goal of enabling a wider section of the scientific cpmmunity to fully appreciate the crucial importance of Natural Products to human culture and future survival."--Jacket.