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Mar. Drugs, Volume 6, Issue 1 (March 2008), Pages 1-38

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Research

Open AccessArticle Antimicrobial and Cytotoxic Assessment of Marine Cyanobacteria - Synechocystis and Synechococcus
Mar. Drugs 2008, 6(1), 1-11; doi:10.3390/md6010001
Received: 11 October 2007 / Accepted: 14 January 2008 / Published: 22 January 2008
Cited by 27 | PDF Full-text (384 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Aqueous extracts and organic solvent extracts of isolated marine cyanobacteria strains were tested for antimicrobial activity against a fungus, Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria and for cytotoxic activity against primary rat hepatocytes and HL-60 cells. Antimicrobial activity was based on the agar diffusion [...] Read more.
Aqueous extracts and organic solvent extracts of isolated marine cyanobacteria strains were tested for antimicrobial activity against a fungus, Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria and for cytotoxic activity against primary rat hepatocytes and HL-60 cells. Antimicrobial activity was based on the agar diffusion assay. Cytotoxic activity was measured by apoptotic cell death scored by cell surface evaluation and nuclear morphology. A high percentage of apoptotic cells were observed for HL-60 cells when treated with cyanobacterial organic extracts. Slight apoptotic effects were observed in primary rat hepatocytes when exposed to aqueous cyanobacterial extracts. Nine cyanobacteria strains were found to have antibiotic activity against two Gram-positive bacteria, Clavibacter michiganensis subsp. insidiosum and Cellulomonas uda. No inhibitory effects were found against the fungus Candida albicans and Gram-negative bacteria. Marine Synechocystis and Synechococcus extracts induce apoptosis in eukaryotic cells and cause inhibition of Gram-positive bacteria. The different activity in different extracts suggests different compounds with different polarities. Full article
Open AccessArticle Actinomycetes from Sediments in the Trondheim Fjord, Norway: Diversity and Biological Activity
Mar. Drugs 2008, 6(1), 12-24; doi:10.3390/md6010012
Received: 21 November 2007 / Revised: 17 January 2008 / Accepted: 17 January 2008 / Published: 1 February 2008
Cited by 74 | PDF Full-text (1469 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The marine environment represents a largely untapped source for isolation of new microorganisms with potential to produce biologically active secondary metabolites. Among such microorganisms, Gram-positive actinomycete bacteria are of special interest, since they are known to produce chemically diverse compounds with a [...] Read more.
The marine environment represents a largely untapped source for isolation of new microorganisms with potential to produce biologically active secondary metabolites. Among such microorganisms, Gram-positive actinomycete bacteria are of special interest, since they are known to produce chemically diverse compounds with a wide range of biological activities. We have set out to isolate and characterize actinomycete bacteria from the sediments in one of the largest Norwegian fjords, the Trondheim fjord, with respect to diversity and antibiotic-producing potential. Approximately 3,200 actinomycete bacteria were isolated using four different agar media from the sediment samples collected at different locations and depths (4.5 to 450 m). Grouping of the isolates first according to the morphology followed by characterization of isolates chosen as group representatives by molecular taxonomy revealed that Micromonospora was the dominating actinomycete genus isolated from the sediments. The deep water sediments contained a higher relative amount of Micromonospora compared to the shallow water samples. Nine percent of the isolates clearly required sea water for normal growth, suggesting that these strains represent obligate marine organisms. Extensive screening of the extracts from all collected isolates for antibacterial and antifungal activities revealed strong antibiotic-producing potential among them. The latter implies that actinomycetes from marine sediments in Norwegian fjords can be potential sources for the discovery of novel anti-infective agents. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bioactive Compounds from Marine Microorganisms)
Open AccessArticle Regional Susceptibility to Domoic Acid in Primary Astrocyte Cells Cultured from the Brain Stem and Hippocampus
Mar. Drugs 2008, 6(1), 25-38; doi:10.3390/md6010025
Received: 28 November 2007 / Revised: 23 January 2008 / Accepted: 9 February 2008 / Published: 14 February 2008
Cited by 11 | PDF Full-text (3180 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Domoic acid is a marine biotoxin associated with harmful algal blooms and is the causative agent of amnesic shellfish poisoning in marine animals and humans. It is also an excitatory amino acid analog to glutamate and kainic acid which acts through glutamate [...] Read more.
Domoic acid is a marine biotoxin associated with harmful algal blooms and is the causative agent of amnesic shellfish poisoning in marine animals and humans. It is also an excitatory amino acid analog to glutamate and kainic acid which acts through glutamate receptors eliciting a very rapid and potent neurotoxic response. The hippocampus, among other brain regions, has been identified as a specific target site having high sensitivity to DOM toxicity. Histopathology evidence indicates that in addition to neurons, the astrocytes were also injured. Electron microscopy data reported in this study further supports the light microscopy findings. Furthermore, the effect of DOM was confirmed by culturing primary astrocytes from the hippocampus and the brain stem and subsequently exposing them to domoic acid. The RNA was extracted and used for biomarker analysis. The biomarker analysis was done for the early response genes including c-fos, c-jun, c-myc, Hsp-72; specific marker for the astrocytes- GFAP and the glutamate receptors including GluR 2, NMDAR 1, NMDAR 2A and B. Although, the astrocyte-GFAP and c-fos were not affected, c-jun and GluR 2 were down-regulated. The microarray analysis revealed that the chemokines / cytokines, tyrosine kinases (Trk), and apoptotic genes were altered. The chemokines that were up-regulated included - IL1-a, IL-1B, IL-6, the small inducible cytokine, interferon protein IP-10, CXC chemokine LIX, and IGF binding proteins. The Bax, Bcl-2, Trk A and Trk B were all downregulated. Interestingly, only the hippocampal astrocytes were affected. Our findings suggest that astrocytes may present a possible target for pharmacological interventions for the prevention and treatment of amnesic shellfish poisoning and for other brain pathologies involving excitotoxicity Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Toxins)

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