Novel molecules that interact with microtubules and have functional activity similar to Taxol™

Lifeng He, George A. Orr, Susan Band Horwitz

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

144 Scopus citations


Taxol™ is an antitumor drug approved by the FDA for the treatment of ovarian, breast and non-small-cell lung carcinomas. Originally isolated from the bark of the Pacific yew, Taxus brevifolia, it was the first natural product described that stabilized microtubules. In the past five years, a group of novel natural products, including the epothilones, discodermolide, eleutherobin, sarcodictyins and the laulimalides, all of which have biological activities similar to those of Taxol, has been discovered. In this review, we discuss each of these novel microtubule-stabilizing agents and the search for a common pharmacophore among them, taking into consideration recent advances in our understanding of the taxanes and tubulin.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1153-1164
Number of pages12
JournalDrug Discovery Today
Issue number22
Publication statusPublished - Nov 15 2001


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery

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