Ellipticines are a class of naturally occurring alkaloids that have been isolated from various plants, including those in the family Apocynaceae. These compounds have been found to exhibit various biological activities, including anti-cancer and anti-microbial properties.

Ellipticines have a unique chemical structure, characterized by a planar, aromatic core with two side chains that contain nitrogen atoms. This structure allows ellipticines to intercalate into DNA, disrupting its normal function and leading to cell death. As a result, ellipticines have been studied as potential anti-cancer agents, particularly for the treatment of drug-resistant cancers.

In addition to their anti-cancer properties, ellipticines have also been found to exhibit antibacterial, antifungal, and antiparasitic activities. However, further research is needed to fully understand the mechanisms behind these effects and to determine the safety and efficacy of ellipticines as therapeutic agents.