Plant-derived bioactive molecules

Many medicines in clinical use have their origins in plants, bacteria or fungi. Phytochemistry involves the isolation and characterisation of compounds from plants, usually with the aim of identifying biologically active components. The group’s research focus is the isolation and characterisation of antibacterial compounds from plants. In particular, we are interested in methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and have isolated anti-MRSA compounds from conifers, aswell as characterising novel phytochemicals with potential anti-diabetic activity.

 Fenugreek (Trigonella foenum graecum)

The mechanism of action of (2S, 3R, 4S) 4-hydroxyisoleucine from fenugreek (Trigonella foenum graecum) has been elucidated, and are characterising phytochemicals from Moringa peregrina (Forssk) Fiori, Gymnema sylvestre and Stevia Rebaudiana Bert.


  • Dr Ken White
  • Dr Eileen Smith
  • Dr Sundus Tewfik


  • Prof Annie Bligh (Westminster)

PhD Students

  • Davoud Roostaei
  • Kiran Kandunuri
  • Ali Saleh