Benzonaphthoxanthenones are a class of flavanoids which are absent in the liverworts and hornworts and present only in the mosses. Ohioensins are benzonaphthoxanthenones which are isolated from various moss species. First compound of this series was isolated from the Polytrichum ohioense Renauld & Cardot. and hence named as Ohioensin A. Together with Ohioensin A, there are 10 other Ohioensins (B–H) and their derivatives have been extracted from different species of mosses. These compounds are pharmaceutically very important and various studies have shown their usefulness as antioxidant, in Atherosclerosis and cytotoxic activities against various human tumor cell lines. In this chapter, synthesis of Ohioensins, their structure and potential medicinal uses are discussed.
Part of the book: Bryophytes