Plant diversity still offered major opportunities for finding new substances for development novel pharmaceuticals. However, it is estimated that only a small percentage (less than 3%) of all currently known plant species have been chemically investigated. On the other hand, more than 60% of the available anticancer drugs were directly based on or developed from natural products. Screening of plant materials has become an important tool in discovery of new sources of biologically active compounds that are active against a wide range of assay targets. New compounds are to be described from poorly studied species and even in species that are considered chemically well known, new chemical strains are still detected. Bryophytes represent a poorly explored part of biodiversity. Milestone investigations on bryophytes are attributed to Japanese researcher Asakawa and his colleagues.
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