NAPRALERTĀ® is a relational database of all natural products, including ethnomedical information, pharmacological / biochemical information of extracts of organisms in vitro, in situ, in vivo, in humans (case reports, non-clinical trials) and clinical studies. Similar information is available for secondary metabolites from natural sources.


In 1975 the system began a systematic search of the literature by examining every journal pertinent to natural products in our UIC Health Science Library, as well as viewing the Table of Contents of a large number of journals from the Internet on a regular (monthly) basis. These journals were selected from a list of journals that historically we knew contained pertinent data for the system. In addition pertinent sections of Chemical Abstracts, particularly the Biochemistry Section, were examined for articles not found in our Library sources and original articles were obtained via Interlibrary Loans. We are fortunate also to have many foreign journals in which articles are rarely found through the aforementioned sources.

To date more than 200,000 scientific papers and reviews are included in NAPRALERT, representing organisms from all countries of the world, including marine organisms, including the geographic origin from where the organisms were obtained.


We believe that our coverage of the literature is comprehensive from at least 1975 through and including 2003. Due to budget problems we only include ca. 15% of the literature from 2004 to the present, but articles are being collected and eventually we hope to be up-to-date.

About 25% of the database is derived from abstracts and 75% from original articles. In the past we have had the occasion to acquire complete literature on ca. 250 genera of plants and these data appear in NAPRALERT. The earliest papers date in the late 1800's.

Our coverage of the literature in the following areas is quite comprehensive:

  • Clinical studies of natural products (including safety)
  • Natural products that affect sugar metabolism
  • Natural products that affect mammalian reproduction
  • Extracts and compounds that affect cancer growth
  • Natural products and antiviral (including HIV/AIDS) activity
  • Natural products and antitubercular activity
  • Natural products and tropical diseases
  • Ethnomedical information on more than 20,000 species of plants
  • Metabolism and pharmacokinetics
  • Natural products that affect plant growth
  • Review articles on organisms at the genus and/or species levels and reviews of secondary metabolites (Citations only)
  • Chemoprevention with natural products
  • Natural insecticides
  • Antiinflammatory activity of natural products
  • Analgesic activity of natural products

Caution: When seeking information on Pharmacological Activity categories, there are many closely-related targets that might relate to a single endpoint. If you cannot retrieve biological data on an activity that you desire, please contact us by e-mail and we will attempt to assist you.