Molecular biological access to the chemistry of unknown soil microbes: a new frontier for natural products

Chem Biol. 1998 Oct;5(10):R245-9. doi: 10.1016/s1074-5521(98)90108-9.


Cultured soil microorganisms have provided a rich source of natural-product chemistry. Because only a tiny fraction of soil microbes from soil are readily cultured, soil might be the greatest untapped resource for novel chemistry. The concept of cloning the metagenome to access the collective genomes and the biosynthetic machinery of soil microflora is explored here.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Bacteria / genetics*
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Gene Expression
  • Microbiological Techniques
  • Soil Microbiology*