Plants serve as rich sources of medicinal substances which can be used for a variety of therapeutic purposes. The increasing prevalence of microbial diseases calls for need to find new ways to cure these diseases. Among the many microbes, viruses exhibit themselves in the most severe forms resulting in high morbidity and mortality rates. HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis B and C viruses, Influenza virus and Dengue virus are some of the many viruses that have gained the attention of public health authorities in recent years. Though a number of prophylactic and therapeutic options are available yet the development of resistance to these agents results in failure to achieve the desired outcomes. Viral attachment and entry into the cell, its genome processing, assembly, release and immune stimulation are the main targets of these antiviral therapies. Most of the antivirals, currently licensed, are of synthetic origin or synthetic analogues of the natural products. These products possess chemical and therapeutic similarities with the products derived from plants. However, the isolation, analysis and regulatory approvals of these natural products are at a very early stage. The review discusses the similarity of therapeutic targets and mechanisms of actions of synthetic and natural products. Moreover, an outline is provided for incorporating the latest research techniques for plant-based antiviral drug discovery and development. © 2013 Babar M, et al.
Babar, M., Najam-us-Sahar, S. Z., Ashraf, M., & Kazi, A. G. (2013). Antiviral drug therapy- exploiting medicinal plants. Journal of Antivirals and Antiretrovirals. https://doi.org/10.4172/jaa.1000060