Endophytic Fungi: Promising Source of Novel Bioactive Compounds

  • Fazilath Uzma
  • Chakrabhavi D. Mohan
  • Chandra N. Siddaiah
  • Srinivas Chowdappa
Part of the Fungal Biology book series (FUNGBIO)


Natural products have been used since earliest times for the treatment of several ailments. They offer excellent prospects for discovery of bioactive compounds and are the basis for the synthesis of effective drugs. Natural products from endophytic fungi of medicinal plants have been recognized as potential sources of bioactive compounds. Endophytes exemplify a diverse microbial community that exists in distinct environments and their diversity in these unique habitats benefits in the exploration of novel bioactive compounds. Fungal endophytes occur ubiquitously in plants and are generally asymptomatic within the host plants. The mutualistic association of a plant with an endophyte could influence the production of analogous bioactive compounds as the host plant. An understanding of biologically active compound production mechanism and their activity is essential for the development of new compounds in the drug discovery process. From the time when taxol, a potent anticancer compound was discovered, research on endophytic fungi has gained momentum and yielded several compounds with antibacterial, antiviral, antioxidant, immunosuppressant, anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic, and anticancer properties. The main focus of this chapter is to provide a concise approach to the origin, classification, host-endophyte symbiosis, and the endophytic fungal role in diverse areas such as plant growth enhancers, antimicrobials, anticancer agents, and antioxidants. This chapter aims to highlight the potential benefits of secondary metabolites of endophytic fungi in varied fields which are valuable to mankind.


Natural products Endophytic fungi Symbiosis Secondary metabolites Bioactive compounds 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Fazilath Uzma
    • 1
  • Chakrabhavi D. Mohan
    • 2
  • Chandra N. Siddaiah
    • 3
  • Srinivas Chowdappa
    • 1
  1. 1.Fungal Metabolite Research Laboratory, Department of Microbiology and BiotechnologyBangalore UniversityBangaloreIndia
  2. 2.Department of Studies in Molecular BiologyUniversity of Mysore, ManasagangotriMysoreIndia
  3. 3.Department of Studies in BiotechnologyUniversity of Mysore, ManasagangotriMysoreIndia

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