Triterpene Glycosides

Authored by: Markus. Ganzera

Handbook of Analysis of Active Compounds in Functional Foods

Print publication date:  January  2012
Online publication date:  January  2012

Print ISBN: 9781439815885
eBook ISBN: 9781439815908
Adobe ISBN:


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Like all terpenoid compounds, triterpenes are composed of isoprene units. Via farnesyl-diphosphate, six of them form squalene, an acyclic intermediate that is synthesized in all living organisms. From this compound, two biosynthesis pathways originate Through epoxidation, cyclization, and conformational changes, one leads to the formation of cycloartenol and cholesterol (which is the precursor of steroids, steroid alkaloids, and cardenolides), and the other one to triterpenes The latter are a large group of natural compounds, with ~1700 derivatives known thus far. They share the same number of carbons in their scaffold (30), and depending on the number of rings they can be separated in tetra- and pentacyclic derivatives [1-3]. Examples for the first group are dammaranes and lanostanes; they both derive from gonane, the steroid nucleus. Oleananes, ursanes, and lupanes are pentacyclic triterpenes (Figure 42.1)

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