Genomic basis for natural product biosynthetic diversity in the actinomycetes

Nat Prod Rep. 2009 Nov;26(11):1362-84. doi: 10.1039/b817069j. Epub 2009 Sep 1.


The phylum Actinobacteria hosts diverse high G + C, Gram-positive bacteria that have evolved a complex chemical language of natural product chemistry to help navigate their fascinatingly varied lifestyles. To date, 71 Actinobacteria genomes have been completed and annotated, with the vast majority representing the Actinomycetales, which are the source of numerous antibiotics and other drugs from genera such as Streptomyces, Saccharopolyspora and Salinispora. These genomic analyses have illuminated the secondary metabolic proficiency of these microbes – underappreciated for years based on conventional isolation programs – and have helped set the foundation for a new natural product discovery paradigm based on genome mining. Trends in the secondary metabolomes of natural product-rich actinomycetes are highlighted in this review article, which contains 199 references.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Actinobacteria / genetics*
  • Actinobacteria / metabolism
  • Biological Products* / biosynthesis
  • Biological Products* / genetics
  • Genome*


  • Biological Products