Synthesis, Anticancer and Antiviral Activity Studies of 1,3,4-Oxadiazoles: A Review

K. Devi1,, A. Srinivasa Rao1,*,, Y. Rajendra Prasad1,, K. Raju2, and D. Geeta Mounika1,

1Shri Vishnu College of Pharmacy (Autonomous), Affiliated to Andhra University, Bhimavaram-534202, India

2AU College of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Andhra University, Visakhapatnam-530003, India

*Corresponding author: E-mail:;


1,3,4-Oxadiazole is a five membered heterocyclic nucleus and a versatile lead structure, where its derivatives showed broad and potent biological functions especially as anticancer and antiviral agents which are associated with various mechanisms such as inhibition of different enzymes, kinases and growth factors. The present review summarizes various synthetic procedures and highlights the targeted inhibitory activities of 1,3,4-oxadiazoles as potential anticancer and antiviral agents along with their structure activity relationship. Molecular modeling and pharmacokinetic studies on 1,3,4-oxadiazoles proved a change in their polarity, flexibility and metabolic stability led to their improved biological activity potential. Among all the substituted 1,3,4-oxadiazoles, the mono- and 2,5-disubstituted derivatives showed considerable biological activities especially as anticancer and antiviral agents. Hence, scientists/researchers considered these as future lead molecules to treat cancer and viral infections along with other diseases. In future, the oxadiazole motif is likely to be incorporated in various other therapeutic molecules.


1,3,4-Oxadiazoles, Anticancer activity, Antiviral activity.

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