Synthesis of Vinaxanthone, Xanthofulvin, and Related Analog Structures

Life Sciences : Therapeutics

Available for licensing


  • Dionicio Siegel , Chemistry and Biochemistry
  • Matthew Chin , University of Texas at Austin
  • Anders Eliasen , University of Texas at Austin
  • Abram Axelrod , University of Texas at Austin

Background/unmet need

Xanthofulvin and its derivative vinaxanthone are known natural products that have been shown to have great potential in developing small-molecule based drug for accelerated central nervous system (CNS) regeneration following traumatic injuries such as spinal cord injury or tissue transplant.

While animal studies have confirmed the therapeutic benefits of these compounds, their exact modes of action are yet to be fully understood. On the other hand, naturally occurring xanthofulvin products contain multiple identical structures that compound the accurate assignment of the most therapeutically plausible structure(s).

Invention Description

This invention presents synthetic routes to xanthofulvin, vinaxanthone and derivatives, which allows simple large-scale production as compared to fermentation, and achieves improved biological performance.


  • Independent from Penicillium production
  • Need for new leads in regenerative therapeutics
  • Rapid access to analogs


  • Operationally simple and efficient synthesis of natural products
  • Ability to synthesize an array of analogs
  • Commercial starting materials
  • Scalable

Market potential/applications

Pharmaceutical and biomedical research 

Development Stage

Lab/bench prototype