Terpenoid bio-transformations and applications via cell/organ cultures: a systematic review

Mohamed Elamir F. Hegazy, Abdelsamed I. Elshamy, Tarik A. Mohamed, Taha A. Hussien, Soleiman E. Helaly, Nahla S. Abdel-Azim, Khaled A. Shams, Abdelaaty A. Shahat, Wafaa A. Tawfik, Alaa M. Shahen, Abdessamad Debbab, Hesham R. El Saedi, Abou El Hamd H. Mohamed, Faiza M. Hammouda, Mahmoud Sakr, Paul W. Paré, Thomas Efferth

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Structurally diverse natural products are valued for their targeted biological activity. The challenge of working with such metabolites is their low natural abundance and complex structure, often with multiple stereocenters, precludes large-scale or unsophisticated chemical synthesis. Since select plants contain the enzymatic machinery necessary to produce specialized compounds, tissue cultures can be used to achieve key transformations for large-scale chemical and/or pharmaceutical applications. In this context, plant tissue-culture bio-transformations have demonstrated great promise in the preparation of pharmaceutical products. This review describes the capacity of cultured plant cells to transform terpenoid natural products and the specific application of such transformations over the past three decades (1988–2019).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)64-82
Number of pages19
JournalCritical Reviews in Biotechnology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2 2020


  • Pharmaceutical products
  • Terpenoid
  • active natural product derivatives
  • enzymatic biotransformations
  • natural metabolites
  • plant cell cultures


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