Investigating the structure-function relationship of anti-mitotic natural products in Canadian prairie plants

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Healy Knibb, Shannon M.
University of Lethbridge. Faculty of Arts and Science
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Dept. of Biological Sciences
This thesis investigates Canadian prairie plants as sources of natural product compounds capable of inhibiting human cell division. Natural products present an opportunity to identify novel anti-mitotic compounds to address the lack of known inhibitors for many mitotic regulatory proteins. By biology-guided fractionation, we purified the natural products anemonin from Pulsatilla nuttalliana and (+)-6-tuliposide A from Erythronium grandiflorum, and this is the first report of their anti-mitotic activities. We then conducted a comparative study between pulchelloid A (from Gaillardia aristata), anemonin and (+)-6-tuliposide A, and identified unique mitotic arrest profiles, suggesting distinct protein targets and mechanisms of action consistent with the widespread relationship between structure and function in biology. The discovery of natural product inhibitors from Canadian prairie plant species holds tremendous potential for advancing our understanding of mitotic regulation and contributes to the development of targeted treatments for precision medicine.
Canadian prairie plants , anti-mitotic compounds , natural product compounds , cell division inhibitors , mitotic arrest profiles , mitotic regulation , targeted treatments research