Utilizing cross-species co-cultures for discovery of novel natural products

Lei Zhuang, Haoran Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Discovery of new natural products, especially those with high biological activities and application values, is of great research significance. However, conventional methods based on the cultivation of microbial mono-cultures can hardly satisfy the increasing need of novel natural product generation. Recently, the development of co-cultures composed of different species has emerged as an effective approach for mining novel natural products. Inspired by microbial communities in nature, these co-culture systems create favorable environmental conditions to promote interactions between co-culture members for activating the natural product biosynthesis that is hard to induce otherwise. A large variety of novel natural products have been identified using this robust approach. This review summarizes the recent achievements of using cross-species co-cultures for natural products discovery and discusses the existing challenges and future directions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)252-262
Number of pages11
JournalCurrent Opinion in Biotechnology
StatePublished - Jun 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Biomedical Engineering


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