Chemistry of Natural Products

Name: Chemistry of Natural Products
Code: QUI13535L
Duration: 15 weeks/78 hours
Scientific Area: Chemistry

Teaching languages: Portuguese
Languages of tutoring support: Portuguese, English
Regime de Frequência: Presencial

Sustainable Development Goals

Learning Goals

The main aim of this course is the study of the biosynthesis of several classes of compounds of secondary metabolism and the recognition of the metabolic importance of some of them. This course also aims to contribute to the improvement of skills in regard to the use and selection of bibliographic sources available on the Internet and in the oral presentation of papers.


Different classes of natural products and main secondary metabolic pathways. Methodology for identification of natural products and establishment of biosynthetic pathways.
Study of the biosynthesis of the terpene compounds. Biosynthesis and biological functions of representative terpene compounds: gibberellins, taxoids, cholesterol, steroids, sex hormones, etc.
Study of the biosynthesis and biological functions of metabolites derived from polyvinyl chains. Biosynthesis of fatty acids and eucosanoids (prostaglandins, thromboxanes and leukotrienes). Biosynthesis of aromatic compounds.
Study of the biosynthesis and biological functions of shikimic acid derivatives. Shikimic acid biosynthesis, phenylalanine, tyrosine and tryptophan. Aliphatic alkaloids and alkaloid derivatives of phenylalanine and tryptophan. Metabolites biosynthesis mixed.

Teaching Methods

The evaluation will take place in the final examination by the written test (80% final grade, with an option for two tests during the semester, 40% of final grade each), that assesses the student's ability to propose a possible mechanism for the biosynthesis of molecules of different biosynthetic pathways studied. This is complemented by ongoing assessment of commitment and performance achieved by the students during the semester (10% of the final grade) and by an oral presentation on the biosynthesis and biological properties of a molecule selected by the student (10% final grade).

Teaching Staff