Throughout the tropics, vast areas of rainforest and other biologically diverse lands are being cleared for agricultural or related uses. Rainforests, the most dramatic example of tropical habitat destrucLion, are estimated to be disappearing at the rate of up to 20.4 million hectares per year world-wide (based on FAO estimates; see World Resources 1990-1991, Oxford University Press)- more than 2% of the total area covered by tropical rainforests per year. Destruction of these complex habitats results in the irreversible loss of both plant and animal diversity, and dramatically illustraLes the need to investigate these threatened species for potentially useful constituents-especially the identification and characterization of novel biologically-active phytochemicals with pharmacologiical and/or pesticidal properties. This volume is based on papers presented by invited speakers at an international symposium entitled "Phytochemical POlential of Tropical Plants: held in conjunction with the second joint meeting of the Phytochemical nd Societies of Europe and North America, as well as the 32 annual meeting of the latter society. The meeting was held at the Deauville Hotel, Miami Beach, Florida, USA from August 8-12,1992. One hundred and twenty-five participants from more than 20 countries attended this meeting.