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Toxins 2014, 6(6), 1929-1950; doi:10.3390/toxins6061929
Review

Oligopeptides as Biomarkers of Cyanobacterial Subpopulations. Toward an Understanding of Their Biological Role

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Received: 23 April 2014; in revised form: 9 June 2014 / Accepted: 16 June 2014 / Published: 23 June 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genomics and Proteomics of Cyanotoxins)
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Abstract: Cyanobacterial oligopeptides comprise a wide range of bioactive and/or toxic compounds. While current research is strongly focused on exploring new oligopeptide variants and their bioactive properties, the biological role of these compounds remains elusive. Oligopeptides production abilities show a remarkably patchy distribution among conspecific strains. This observation has prompted alternative approaches to unveil their adaptive value, based on the use of cellular oligopeptide compositions as biomarkers of intraspecific subpopulations or chemotypes in freshwater cyanobacteria. Studies addressing the diversity, distribution, and dynamics of chemotypes in natural systems have provided important insights into the structure and ecology of cyanobacterial populations and the adaptive value of oligopeptides. This review presents an overview of the fundamentals of this emerging approach and its most relevant findings, and discusses our current understanding of the role of oligopeptides in the ecology of cyanobacteria.
Keywords: secondary metabolites; non-ribosomal; chemotypes; MALDI; NRPS; polymorphism; diversification secondary metabolites; non-ribosomal; chemotypes; MALDI; NRPS; polymorphism; diversification
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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MDPI and ACS Style

Agha, R.; Quesada, A. Oligopeptides as Biomarkers of Cyanobacterial Subpopulations. Toward an Understanding of Their Biological Role. Toxins 2014, 6, 1929-1950.

AMA Style

Agha R, Quesada A. Oligopeptides as Biomarkers of Cyanobacterial Subpopulations. Toward an Understanding of Their Biological Role. Toxins. 2014; 6(6):1929-1950.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Agha, Ramsy; Quesada, Antonio. 2014. "Oligopeptides as Biomarkers of Cyanobacterial Subpopulations. Toward an Understanding of Their Biological Role." Toxins 6, no. 6: 1929-1950.


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