Nonribosomal peptides (NRPs) have gained attention due to their diverse biological activities and potential applications in medicine and agriculture. The natural diversity of NRPs is a result of evolutionary processes that have occurred over millions of years. Recent studies have shed light on the mechanisms by which nonribosomal peptide synthetases (NRPSs) evolve, including gene duplication, recombination, and horizontal transfer. Mimicking natural evolution could be a useful strategy for engineering NRPSs to produce novel compounds with desired properties. Furthermore, the emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria has highlighted the urgent need for new drugs, and NRPs represent a promising avenue for drug discovery. This review discusses the engineering potential of NRPSs in light of their evolutionary history.

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