Antimicrobial Activity of Calixarenes and Related Macrocycles

Dmitriy Shurpik, Pavel Padnya, Ivan Stoikov, Peter Cragg

Research output: Contribution to journalLiterature reviewpeer-review


Calixarenes and related macrocycles have been shown to have antimicrobial effects since the 1950s. This review highlights the antimicrobial properties of almost 200 calixarenes, resorcinarenes, and pillararenes acting as prodrugs, drug delivery agents, and inhibitors of biofilm formation. A particularly important development in recent years has been the use of macrocycles with substituents terminating in sugars as biofilm inhibitors through their interactions with lectins. Although many examples exist where calixarenes encapsulate, or incorporate, antimicrobial drugs, one of the main factors to emerge is the ability of functionalized macrocycles to engage in multivalent interactions with proteins, and thus inhibit cellular aggregation.
Original languageEnglish
Article number5145
Number of pages32
Issue number21
Publication statusPublished - 5 Nov 2020

Bibliographical note

© 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (

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