Thiazoles and their derivatives have been frequently discovered as a vital component of novel and structurally diverse natural products that exhibit a wide variety of biological activities. The exceptional range of antitumor, antiviral, and antibiotic activities, as well as their presence in peptides, or ability to bind to proteins, DNA, and RNA, have directed numerous synthetic studies and new applications of these heterocycles.
The thiazole ring has been identified as a central feature of a myriad of natural products, perhaps the best known being the epothilones. Additionally, thiazoles are frequently appearing in peptide research. Thiazoles can also serve as a protected formyl group that can be liberated in the late stages of a complex natural product synthesis.