The Applications of Shikimic Acid

May 14, 2021

Shikimic acid is a natural organic compound. For a long time, shikimic acid was mainly extracted from the dried and mature fruits of star anise. It is white powder, easily soluble in water and methanol but insoluble in chloroform, benzene and petroleum ether.

Applications in pharmacology:

1. Shikimic acid from Chinese star anise (Illicium verum) is commonly used as a starting material for production of oseltamivir (Tamiflu). It's the world's most widely-used antiviral drug for nasties such as swine flu, bird flu, and the regular winter flu.

2. According to a study, Shikimic acid has anti-bacterial properties. The researchers found that the anti-microbial compounds that are found in this acid are effective in fighting up to 67 drug-resistant bacteria strains.

3. Shikimic acid has obvious antithrombotic effect, which can inhibit arteriovenous thrombosis and cerebral thrombosis.

Application in the agricultural field:

Shikimic acid derivatives have a huge interest in agriculture. Many of them are used as herbicides and antibacterial agents, because they can block the shikimic acid pathway (shikimate pathway) in plants and bacteria, without negatively affecting mammals.


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