Triterpenoids of marine origin as anti-cancer agents

Molecules. 2013 Jul 4;18(7):7886-909. doi: 10.3390/molecules18077886.


Triterpenoids are the most abundant secondary metabolites present in marine organisms, such as marine sponges, sea cucumbers, marine algae and marine-derived fungi. A large number of triterpenoids are known to exhibit cytotoxicity against a variety of tumor cells, as well as anticancer efficacy in preclinical animal models. In this review efforts have been taken to review the structural features and the potential use of triterpenoids of marine origin to be used in the pharmaceutical industry as potential anti-cancer drug leads.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anticarcinogenic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Aquatic Organisms / chemistry
  • Cell Line, Tumor / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Porifera / chemistry
  • Triterpenes / chemistry
  • Triterpenes / isolation & purification
  • Triterpenes / pharmacology*


  • Anticarcinogenic Agents
  • Triterpenes