Natural Products Chemistry

Sources, Separations and Structures

By Raymond Cooper, George Nicola

© 2014 – CRC Press

206 pages | 178 B/W Illus.

Purchasing Options:
Paperback: 9781466567610
pub: 2014-07-29
US Dollars$99.95

About the Book

Notoriously cumbersome to isolate and challenging to synthesize, the path of natural products to viable drugs is an arduous journey. Yet compounds isolated from nature may possessfascinating structures, biological profiles and pharmaceutical potential far greater than anything made by man. Natural Products Chemistry: Sources, Separations and Structures presents a practical guide to sourcing, isolating, and discovering new compounds from nature many of which become pharmaceutical drugs. This book emphasizes the challenges and advantages of products acquired from nature, compared to those obtained from combinatorial chemistry.

A basic introduction, the book describes the whole cycle from farm to final compound, backed up by case studies drawn from industry and research applications. It broadens the scope of applications and draws upon examples from various sources. Natural products chemistry, as taught today, draws its examples mainly from marine chemistry or plant chemistry; however, there is also a fascinating and rich world of fermented (microbial and algal) products leading to complex structures. Thus, the book draws upon examples from the microbial world and from insects too. Therefore, this is a source of bioactive metabolites, not traditionally available in academic settings, more the mainstay of the pharmaceutical industry.

Providing a roadmap of the process of collecting a compound from nature, isolating the active ingredient, and determining the chemical structure, this book provides a unique approach to the world of natural products.


"Natural Products Chemistry is a great basic overview of pharmacognosy that will be useful for undergraduate classes or introductory graduate work in this field. The text is written in a straightforward and accessible manner, aptly lending itself to use both in classes and in labs. In this regard, the book accomplishes its goals of introducing the varied field of pharmacognosy and establishing the discipline as vibrant, diverse, and constantly applicable and necessary to human society. I certainly would recommend its use in universities, medical schools, and pharmacy programs."

—Amy C. Keller, PhD, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Aurora, Colorado, in HerbalGram

Table of Contents

History of Natural Products




Biological and Pharmacological Aspects

Fractionation and Isolation

Structure Elucidation

X-ray crystallography


Mass Spectrometry


Chemical Synthesis

Optimization for Mass Production and Manufacturing

Medicinal Applications

Integrating with System Biology

Computational Chemistry



Environmental Protection

International Treaties


Curation and Digitization

Intellectual Property

Licensing and Strategy

About the Authors

Drs. Cooper and Nicola were introduced to each other by CRC Press editor Hilary Rowe during a natural products conference. Inspired to pursue his passion for natural products by his former high school chemistry teacher, Dr. Cooper credits his longevity in the field to the great people and teams he has had the good fortune and privilege of working with. He says that one of the most rewarding aspects of his work has been the satisfaction that comes from being part of a team that is able to bring new products of natural product origin to market.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
MEDICAL / Pharmacology
SCIENCE / Chemistry / General