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posted on 07.08.2020, 11:55 by Farhana Rumzum Bhuiyan, Sabbir Howlader, Topu Raihan, Mahmudul Hasan

COVID-19, a disease induced by SARS-CoV-2 (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus-2), has been the cause of a worldwide pandemic. Though extensive research works have been reported in recent days on the development of effective therapeutics against this global health crisis, there is still no approved therapy against SARS-CoV-2. In the present study, plant-synthesized secondary metabolites (PSMs) have been prioritized to make a review focusing on the efficacy of plant-originated therapeutics for the treatment of COVID-19. Plant metabolites are a source of countless medicinal compounds, while the diversity of multidimensional chemical structures has made them superior to treat serious diseases. Some have already been reported as promising alternative medicines and lead compounds for drug repurposing and discovery. The versatility of secondary metabolites may provide novel antibiotics to tackle MDR (Multi-Drug Resistant) microbes too. This review attempted to find out plant metabolites that have the therapeutic potential to treat a wide range of viral pathogens. The study includes the search of remedies belonging to plant families, susceptible viral candidates, antiviral assays, and the mode of therapeutic action; this attempt resulted in the collection of an enormous number of natural therapeutics that might be suggested for the treatment of COVID-19. About 219 plants from 83 families were found to have antiviral activity. Among them, 149 plants from 71 families were screened for the identification of the major plant secondary metabolites (PSMs) that might be effective for this pandemic. Our investigation revealed that the proposed plant metabolites can serve as potential anti- SARS-CoV-2 lead molecules for further optimization and drug development processes to combat COVID-19 and future pandemics caused by viruses. This review will stimulate further analysis by the scientific community and boost antiviral plant-based research followed by novel drug designing.