-Discodermolide is a recently discovered polyketide
Polyketides are secondary metabolites from bacteria, fungi, plants, and animals. Polyketides are usually biosynthesized through the decarboxylative condensation of malonyl-CoA derived extender units in a similar process to fatty acid synthesis...

 natural product
Natural product
A natural product is a chemical compound or substance produced by a living organism - found in nature that usually has a pharmacological or biological activity for use in pharmaceutical drug discovery and drug design...

 found to be a potent inhibitor of tumor
A tumor or tumour is commonly used as a synonym for a neoplasm that appears enlarged in size. Tumor is not synonymous with cancer...

 cell growth. The molecule's carbon skeleton is made up of eight polypropionate
The propanoate or propionate ion is C2H5COO− .A propanoic or propionic compound is a salt or ester of propanoic acid....

 and four acetate
An acetate is a derivative of acetic acid. This term includes salts and esters, as well as the anion found in solution. Most of the approximately 5 billion kilograms of acetic acid produced annually in industry are used in the production of acetates, which usually take the form of polymers. In...

 units with 13 stereocenters.

Discodermolide was first isolated in 1990 from the Caribbean marine sponge Discodermia dissoluta by chemist Dr. Sarath Gunasekera and biologist Dr. Ross Longley, scientists at the Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institution.