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Topical Collection "Marine Polysaccharides"

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A topical collection in Marine Drugs (ISSN 1660-3397).

Editor

Collection Editor
Dr. Paola Laurienzo (Website)

Istituto di Chimica e Tecnologia dei Polimeri, C.N.R.-Via Campi Flegrei, 34-80078 Pozzuoli (Naples), Italy
Fax: +39 818 675 230

Topical Collection Information

Dear Colleagues,

Biopolymers, as natural polysaccharides, are considered benign polymers for what concerns the environment. This is not a new invention, but at best a renaissance: the first type of polymers used by human kind were animal hides, cellulose, silk, wool. Among benefits of natural occurring biopolymers there are potential biocompatibility, renewable resources, low processing costs, tailoring of structure by genetic manipulation, and, as said, environmentally compatibility. Limits are, sometimes, premature degradation and high production costs due to the very high purity required for medical uses. Polysaccharides are not drugs by themselves, but their use in pharmaceutical field, for example as drug carriers or antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory or anticoagulant agents, is increasingly promising. Marine polysaccharides include chitin, chitosan, alginate, agar and carrageenans. Chitosan is a cationic carbohydrate biopolymer derived from chitin, the second most abundant polysaccharides present in nature after cellulose. The main sources of chitin are the shell wastes of shrimps, lobsters and crabs. For its characteristics, chitosan founds particular application as non viral vector in gene delivery. Films from chitosan are very tough and long lasting. Alginates derive from seaweed extraction (pheophyceae), and are mainly used in drug delivery and as hydrogels for immobilizing cells and enzymes, due to the mild conditions of cross-linking through bivalent cations (Ca2+). Agar (or agar-agar) and carrageenans are linear polysaccharides from red seaweeds. They are highly reactive chemically and are peculiar for thermoreversible gel formation. Exopolysaccharides (EPS), substantial components of the extracellular matrix of many cells of marine origin, also have to be mentioned for their potential interest in pharmaceuticals, and new EPS producing bacteria, particularly from extreme marine environments, are being isolated.
The possibility of chemical modification, blending and addition of biodegradable additives allows to tailor the final properties of polysaccharides and opens the doors to wider applications, particularly in pharmaceutical area. This issue is intended to explore any new potentiality of marine polysaccharides, as those above mentioned, deriving from chemical or chemical-physical modifications, and the scaling-up of their pharmaceutical applications.

Dr. Paola Laurienzo
Collection Editor

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Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs).


Keywords

  • chitosan
  • alginate
  • agar
  • carrageenans
  • exopolysaccharides
  • chemical modification
  • drug delivery
  • gene delivery

Published Papers (55 papers)

2016

Jump to: 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010

Open AccessArticle Molecular Weight-Dependent Immunostimulative Activity of Low Molecular Weight Chitosan via Regulating NF-κB and AP-1 Signaling Pathways in RAW264.7 Macrophages
Mar. Drugs 2016, 14(9), 169; doi:10.3390/md14090169
Received: 28 July 2016 / Revised: 12 September 2016 / Accepted: 13 September 2016 / Published: 20 September 2016
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Abstract
Chitosan and its derivatives such as low molecular weight chitosans (LMWCs) have been found to possess many important biological properties, such as antioxidant and antitumor effects. In our previous study, LMWCs were found to elicit a strong immunomodulatory response in macrophages dependent [...] Read more.
Chitosan and its derivatives such as low molecular weight chitosans (LMWCs) have been found to possess many important biological properties, such as antioxidant and antitumor effects. In our previous study, LMWCs were found to elicit a strong immunomodulatory response in macrophages dependent on molecular weight. Herein we further investigated the molecular weight-dependent immunostimulative activity of LMWCs and elucidated its mechanism of action on RAW264.7 macrophages. LMWCs (3 kDa and 50 kDa of molecular weight) could significantly enhance the mRNA expression levels of COX-2, IL-10 and MCP-1 in a molecular weight and concentration-dependent manner. The results suggested that LMWCs elicited a significant immunomodulatory response, which was dependent on the dose and the molecular weight. Regarding the possible molecular mechanism of action, LMWCs promoted the expression of the genes of key molecules in NF-κB and AP-1 pathways, including IKKβ, TRAF6 and JNK1, and induced the phosphorylation of protein IKBα in RAW264.7 macrophage. Moreover, LMWCs increased nuclear translocation of p65 and activation of activator protein-1 (AP-1, C-Jun and C-Fos) in a molecular weight-dependent manner. Taken together, our findings suggested that LMWCs exert immunostimulative activity via activation of NF-κB and AP-1 pathways in RAW264.7 macrophages in a molecular weight-dependent manner and that 3 kDa LMWC shows great potential as a novel agent for the treatment of immune suppression diseases and in future vaccines. Full article
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Open AccessReview Fucoidans in Nanomedicine
Mar. Drugs 2016, 14(8), 145; doi:10.3390/md14080145
Received: 17 June 2016 / Revised: 20 July 2016 / Accepted: 21 July 2016 / Published: 29 July 2016
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Abstract
Fucoidans are widespread cost-effective sulfated marine polysaccharides which have raised interest in the scientific community over last decades for their wide spectrum of bioactivities. Unsurprisingly, nanomedicine has grasped these compounds to develop innovative therapeutic and diagnostic nanosystems. The applications of fucoidans in [...] Read more.
Fucoidans are widespread cost-effective sulfated marine polysaccharides which have raised interest in the scientific community over last decades for their wide spectrum of bioactivities. Unsurprisingly, nanomedicine has grasped these compounds to develop innovative therapeutic and diagnostic nanosystems. The applications of fucoidans in nanomedicine as imaging agents, drug carriers or for their intrinsic properties are reviewed here after a short presentation of the main structural data and biological properties of fucoidans. The origin and the physicochemical specifications of fucoidans are summarized in order to discuss the strategy of fucoidan-containing nanosystems in Human health. Currently, there is a need for reproducible, well characterized fucoidan fractions to ensure significant progress. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Electrospinning of Nanodiamond-Modified Polysaccharide Nanofibers with Physico-Mechanical Properties Close to Natural Skins
Mar. Drugs 2016, 14(7), 128; doi:10.3390/md14070128
Received: 30 May 2016 / Revised: 28 June 2016 / Accepted: 29 June 2016 / Published: 7 July 2016
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Abstract
Electrospinning of biopolymers has gained significant interest for the fabrication of fibrous mats for potential applications in tissue engineering, particularly for wound dressing and skin regeneration. In this study, for the first time, we report successful electrospinning of chitosan-based biopolymers containing bacterial [...] Read more.
Electrospinning of biopolymers has gained significant interest for the fabrication of fibrous mats for potential applications in tissue engineering, particularly for wound dressing and skin regeneration. In this study, for the first time, we report successful electrospinning of chitosan-based biopolymers containing bacterial cellulous (33 wt %) and medical grade nanodiamonds (MND) (3 nm; up to 3 wt %). Morphological studies by scanning electron microscopy showed that long and uniform fibers with controllable diameters from 80 to 170 nm were prepared. Introducing diamond nanoparticles facilitated the electrospinning process with a decrease in the size of fibers. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy determined hydrogen bonding between the polymeric matrix and functional groups of MND. It was also found that beyond 1 wt % MND, percolation networks of nanoparticles were formed which affected the properties of the nanofibrous mats. Uniaxial tensile testing of the woven mats determined significant enhancement of the strength (from 13 MPa to 25 MP) by dispersion of 1 wt % MND. The hydrophilicity of the mats was also remarkably improved, which was favorable for cell attachment. The water vapor permeability was tailorable in the range of 342 to 423 µg·Pa−1·s−1·m−1. The nanodiamond-modified mats are potentially suitable for wound healing applications. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Anticancer Effect of Fucoidan on DU-145 Prostate Cancer Cells through Inhibition of PI3K/Akt and MAPK Pathway Expression
Mar. Drugs 2016, 14(7), 126; doi:10.3390/md14070126
Received: 20 May 2016 / Revised: 18 June 2016 / Accepted: 29 June 2016 / Published: 7 July 2016
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Abstract
In this study, we showed that PI3K/Akt signaling mediates fucoidan’s anticancer effects on prostate cancer cells, including suppression of proliferation. Fucoidan significantly decreased viability of DU-145 cancer cells in a concentration-dependent manner as shown by MTT [3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide] assay. The drug also [...] Read more.
In this study, we showed that PI3K/Akt signaling mediates fucoidan’s anticancer effects on prostate cancer cells, including suppression of proliferation. Fucoidan significantly decreased viability of DU-145 cancer cells in a concentration-dependent manner as shown by MTT [3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide] assay. The drug also significantly increased chromatin condensation, which indicates apoptosis, in a concentration-dependent manner as shown by DAPI (4′,6-diamidino-2-phenylindole) staining. Fucoidan increased expression of Bax, cleaved poly-ADP ribose polymerase and cleaved caspase-9, and decreased of the Bcl-2, p-Akt, p-PI3K, p-P38, and p-ERK in a concentration-dependent manner. In vivo, fucoidan (at 5 and 10 mg/kg) significantly decreased tumor volume, and increased apoptosis as assessed by the TUNEL (terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick end labeling) assay, confirming the tumor inhibitory effect. The drug also increased expression of p-Akt and p-ERK as shown by immunohistochemistry staining. Therefore, fucoidan may be a promising cancer preventive medicine due to its growth inhibitory effects and induction of apoptosis in human prostate cancer cells. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Toxicological Evaluation of Low Molecular Weight Fucoidan in Vitro and in Vivo
Mar. Drugs 2016, 14(7), 121; doi:10.3390/md14070121
Received: 25 April 2016 / Revised: 12 June 2016 / Accepted: 17 June 2016 / Published: 24 June 2016
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Abstract
For a long time, fucoidan has been well known for its pharmacological activities, and recently low molecular weight fucoidan (LMF) has been used in food supplements and pharmaceutical products. In the present study, LMF was extracted from Laminaria japonica by enzyme hydrolysis. [...] Read more.
For a long time, fucoidan has been well known for its pharmacological activities, and recently low molecular weight fucoidan (LMF) has been used in food supplements and pharmaceutical products. In the present study, LMF was extracted from Laminaria japonica by enzyme hydrolysis. The toxicity of LMF in mouse and rat models was determined by many methods, such as total arsenic content, bacterial reverse mutation assay, chromosome aberration assay, and in vivo micronucleus assay. The present findings showed that LMF at 5000 μg/mL exhibited no mutagenicity. It also produced no formatting disruption of red blood cells in vivo. At 2000 mg/kg BW/day there were no toxicological indications. LMF is expected to be used as a safe food supplement. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Effect of Experimental Parameters on Alginate/Chitosan Microparticles for BCG Encapsulation
Mar. Drugs 2016, 14(5), 90; doi:10.3390/md14050090
Received: 3 February 2016 / Revised: 21 April 2016 / Accepted: 28 April 2016 / Published: 11 May 2016
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Abstract
The aim of the present study was to develop novel Mycobacterium bovis bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG)-loaded polymeric microparticles with optimized particle surface characteristics and biocompatibility, so that whole live attenuated bacteria could be further used for pre-exposure vaccination against Mycobacterium tuberculosis by the [...] Read more.
The aim of the present study was to develop novel Mycobacterium bovis bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG)-loaded polymeric microparticles with optimized particle surface characteristics and biocompatibility, so that whole live attenuated bacteria could be further used for pre-exposure vaccination against Mycobacterium tuberculosis by the intranasal route. BCG was encapsulated in chitosan and alginate microparticles through three different polyionic complexation methods by high speed stirring. For comparison purposes, similar formulations were prepared with high shear homogenization and sonication. Additional optimization studies were conducted with polymers of different quality specifications in a wide range of pH values, and with three different cryoprotectors. Particle morphology, size distribution, encapsulation efficiency, surface charge, physicochemical properties and biocompatibility were assessed. Particles exhibited a micrometer size and a spherical morphology. Chitosan addition to BCG shifted the bacilli surface charge from negative zeta potential values to strongly positive ones. Chitosan of low molecular weight produced particle suspensions of lower size distribution and higher stability, allowing efficient BCG encapsulation and biocompatibility. Particle formulation consistency was improved when the availability of functional groups from alginate and chitosan was close to stoichiometric proportion. Thus, the herein described microparticulate system constitutes a promising strategy to deliver BCG vaccine by the intranasal route. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview Marine Origin Polysaccharides in Drug Delivery Systems
Mar. Drugs 2016, 14(2), 34; doi:10.3390/md14020034
Received: 14 December 2015 / Revised: 22 January 2016 / Accepted: 25 January 2016 / Published: 5 February 2016
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (3038 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Oceans are a vast source of natural substances. In them, we find various compounds with wide biotechnological and biomedical applicabilities. The exploitation of the sea as a renewable source of biocompounds can have a positive impact on the development of new systems [...] Read more.
Oceans are a vast source of natural substances. In them, we find various compounds with wide biotechnological and biomedical applicabilities. The exploitation of the sea as a renewable source of biocompounds can have a positive impact on the development of new systems and devices for biomedical applications. Marine polysaccharides are among the most abundant materials in the seas, which contributes to a decrease of the extraction costs, besides their solubility behavior in aqueous solvents and extraction media, and their interaction with other biocompounds. Polysaccharides such as alginate, carrageenan and fucoidan can be extracted from algae, whereas chitosan and hyaluronan can be obtained from animal sources. Most marine polysaccharides have important biological properties such as biocompatibility, biodegradability, and anti-inflammatory activity, as well as adhesive and antimicrobial actions. Moreover, they can be modified in order to allow processing them into various shapes and sizes and may exhibit response dependence to external stimuli, such as pH and temperature. Due to these properties, these biomaterials have been studied as raw material for the construction of carrier devices for drugs, including particles, capsules and hydrogels. The devices are designed to achieve a controlled release of therapeutic agents in an attempt to fight against serious diseases, and to be used in advanced therapies, such as gene delivery or regenerative medicine. Full article
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Open AccessReview Fucoidan as a Potential Therapeutic for Major Blinding Diseases—A Hypothesis
Mar. Drugs 2016, 14(2), 31; doi:10.3390/md14020031
Received: 30 November 2015 / Revised: 12 January 2016 / Accepted: 22 January 2016 / Published: 3 February 2016
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Abstract
Fucoidan is a heterogeneous group of sulfated polysaccharide with a high content of l-fucose, which can be extracted from brown algae and marine invertebrates. It has many beneficial biological activities that make fucoidan an interesting candidate for therapeutic application in a [...] Read more.
Fucoidan is a heterogeneous group of sulfated polysaccharide with a high content of l-fucose, which can be extracted from brown algae and marine invertebrates. It has many beneficial biological activities that make fucoidan an interesting candidate for therapeutic application in a variety of diseases. Age-related macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy are major causes for vision loss and blindness in the industrialized countries and increasingly in the developing world. Some of the characteristics found in certain fucoidans, such as its anti-oxidant activity, complement inhibition or interaction with the Vascular Endothelial Growth factor, which would be of high interest for a potential application of fucoidan in age-related macular degeneration or diabetic retinopathy. However, the possible usage of fucoidan in ophthalmological diseases has received little attention so far. In this review, biological activities of fucoidan that could be of interest regarding these diseases will be discussed. Full article
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2015

Jump to: 2016, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010

Open AccessArticle Structural and Immunological Activity Characterization of a Polysaccharide Isolated from Meretrix meretrix Linnaeus
Mar. Drugs 2016, 14(1), 6; doi:10.3390/md14010006
Received: 2 December 2015 / Revised: 13 December 2015 / Accepted: 21 December 2015 / Published: 29 December 2015
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Abstract
Polysaccharides from marine clams perform various biological activities, whereas information on structure is scarce. Here, a water-soluble polysaccharide MMPX-B2 was isolated from Meretrix meretrix Linnaeus. The proposed structure was deduced through characterization and its immunological activity was investigated. MMPX-B2 consisted of d [...] Read more.
Polysaccharides from marine clams perform various biological activities, whereas information on structure is scarce. Here, a water-soluble polysaccharide MMPX-B2 was isolated from Meretrix meretrix Linnaeus. The proposed structure was deduced through characterization and its immunological activity was investigated. MMPX-B2 consisted of d-glucose and d-galctose residues at a molar ratio of 3.51:1.00. The average molecular weight of MMPX-B2 was 510 kDa. This polysaccharide possessed a main chain of (1→4)-linked-α-d-glucopyranosyl residues, partially substituted at the C-6 position by a few terminal β-d-galactose residues or branched chains consisting of (1→3)-linked β-d-galactose residues. Preliminary immunological tests in vitro showed that MMPX-B2 could stimulate the murine macrophages to release various cytokines, and the structure-activity relationship was then established. The present study demonstrated the potential immunological activity of MMPX-B2, and provided references for studying the active ingredients in M. meretrix. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Characterization and Comparison of the Structural Features, Immune-Modulatory and Anti-Avian Influenza Virus Activities Conferred by Three Algal Sulfated Polysaccharides
Mar. Drugs 2016, 14(1), 4; doi:10.3390/md14010004
Received: 9 October 2015 / Revised: 14 December 2015 / Accepted: 17 December 2015 / Published: 29 December 2015
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (2961 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Three marine macroalgae, i.e., Grateloupia filicina, Ulva pertusa and Sargassum qingdaoense, were selected as the deputies of Rhodophyta, Chlorophyta and Ochrophyta for comparative analysis of the molecular structures and biological activities of sulfated polysaccharides (SP). The ratio of water-soluble [...] Read more.
Three marine macroalgae, i.e., Grateloupia filicina, Ulva pertusa and Sargassum qingdaoense, were selected as the deputies of Rhodophyta, Chlorophyta and Ochrophyta for comparative analysis of the molecular structures and biological activities of sulfated polysaccharides (SP). The ratio of water-soluble polysaccharides, the monosaccharide composition and the sulfated contents of three extracted SPs were determined, and their structures were characterized by Fourier transformation infrared spectroscopy. In addition, biological activity analysis showed that all three SPs had immune-modulatory activity both in vitro and in vivo, and SPs from S. qingdaoense had the best effect. Further bioassays showed that three SPs could not only enhance the immunity level stimulated by inactivated avian influenza virus (AIV) in vivo but also significantly inhibited the activity of activated AIV (H9N2 subtype) in vitro. G. filicina SP exhibited the strongest anti-AIV activity. These results revealed the variations in structural features and bioactivities among three SPs and indicated the potential adjuvants for immune-enhancement and anti-AIV. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Heparanase and Syndecan-4 Are Involved in Low Molecular Weight Fucoidan-Induced Angiogenesis
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(11), 6588-6608; doi:10.3390/md13116588
Received: 29 July 2015 / Revised: 18 September 2015 / Accepted: 19 October 2015 / Published: 28 October 2015
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (1701 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Induction of angiogenesis is a potential treatment for chronic ischemia. Low molecular weight fucoidan (LMWF), the sulfated polysaccharide from brown seaweeds, has been shown to promote revascularization in a rat limb ischemia, increasing angiogenesis in vivo. We investigated the potential role [...] Read more.
Induction of angiogenesis is a potential treatment for chronic ischemia. Low molecular weight fucoidan (LMWF), the sulfated polysaccharide from brown seaweeds, has been shown to promote revascularization in a rat limb ischemia, increasing angiogenesis in vivo. We investigated the potential role of two heparan sulfate (HS) metabolism enzymes, exostosin-2 (EXT2) and heparanase (HPSE), and of two HS-membrane proteoglycans, syndecan-1 and -4 (SDC-1 and SDC-4), in LMWF induced angiogenesis. Our results showed that LMWF increases human vascular endothelial cell (HUVEC) migration and angiogenesis in vitro. We report that the expression and activity of the HS-degrading HPSE was increased after LMWF treatment. The phenotypic tests of LMWF-treated and EXT2- or HPSE-siRNA-transfected cells indicated that EXT2 or HPSE expression significantly affect the proangiogenic potential of LMWF. In addition, LMWF increased SDC-1, but decreased SDC-4 expressions. The effect of LMWF depends on SDC-4 expression. Silencing EXT2 or HPSE leads to an increased expression of SDC-4, providing the evidence that EXT2 and HPSE regulate the SDC-4 expression. Altogether, these data indicate that EXT2, HPSE, and SDC-4 are involved in the proangiogenic effects of LMWF, suggesting that the HS metabolism changes linked to LMWF-induced angiogenesis offer the opportunity for new therapeutic strategies of ischemic diseases. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Salt Effect on the Antioxidant Activity of Red Microalgal Sulfated Polysaccharides in Soy-Bean Formula
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(10), 6425-6439; doi:10.3390/md13106425
Received: 13 August 2015 / Revised: 3 October 2015 / Accepted: 8 October 2015 / Published: 20 October 2015
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Abstract
Sulfated polysaccharides produced by microalgae, which are known to exhibit various biological activities, may potentially serve as natural antioxidant sources. To date, only a few studies have examined the antioxidant bioactivity of red microalgal polysaccharides. In this research, the effect of different [...] Read more.
Sulfated polysaccharides produced by microalgae, which are known to exhibit various biological activities, may potentially serve as natural antioxidant sources. To date, only a few studies have examined the antioxidant bioactivity of red microalgal polysaccharides. In this research, the effect of different salts on the antioxidant activities of two red microalgal sulfated polysaccharides derived from Porphyridium sp. and Porphyridium aerugineum were studied in a soy bean-based infant milk formula. Salt composition and concentration were both shown to affect the polysaccharides’ antioxidant activity. It can be postulated that the salt ions intefer with the polysaccharide chains’ interactions and alter their structure, leading to a new three-dimensional structure that better exposes antiooxidant sites in comparison to the polysaccharide without salt supplement. Among the cations that were studied, Ca2+ had the strongest enhancement effect on antioxidant activities of both polysaccharides. Understanding the effect of salts on polysaccharides’ stucture, in addition to furthering knowledge on polysaccharide bioactivities, may also shed light on the position of the antioxidant active sites. Full article
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Open AccessCommunication Immunostimulative Activity of Low Molecular Weight Chitosans in RAW264.7 Macrophages
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(10), 6210-6225; doi:10.3390/md13106210
Received: 2 July 2015 / Revised: 9 September 2015 / Accepted: 21 September 2015 / Published: 30 September 2015
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (548 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Chitosan and its derivatives such as low molecular weight chitosans (LMWCs) have been reported to exert many biological activities, such as antioxidant and antitumor effects. However, complex and molecular weight dependent effects of chitosan remain controversial and the mechanisms that mediate these [...] Read more.
Chitosan and its derivatives such as low molecular weight chitosans (LMWCs) have been reported to exert many biological activities, such as antioxidant and antitumor effects. However, complex and molecular weight dependent effects of chitosan remain controversial and the mechanisms that mediate these complex effects are still poorly defined. This study was carried out to investigate the immunostimulative effect of different molecular weight chitosan in RAW264.7 macrophages. Our data suggested that two LMWCs (molecular weight of 3 kDa and 50 kDa) both possessed immunostimulative activity, which was dependent on dose and, at the higher doses, also on the molecular weight. LMWCs could significantly enhance the the pinocytic activity, and induce the production of tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α), interleukin 6 (IL-6), interferon-γ (IFN-γ), nitric oxide (NO) and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) in a molecular weight and concentration-dependent manner. LMWCs were further showed to promote the expression of the genes including iNOS, TNF-α. Taken together, our findings suggested that LMWCs elicited significantly immunomodulatory response through up-regulating mRNA expression of proinflammatory cytokines and activated RAW264.7 macrophage in a molecular weight- and concentration-dependent manner. Full article
Open AccessArticle Alginate-Derived Oligosaccharide Inhibits Neuroinflammation and Promotes Microglial Phagocytosis of β-Amyloid
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(9), 5828-5846; doi:10.3390/md13095828
Received: 17 July 2015 / Revised: 21 August 2015 / Accepted: 7 September 2015 / Published: 16 September 2015
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (2977 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Alginate from marine brown algae has been widely applied in biotechnology. In this work, the effects of alginate-derived oligosaccharide (AdO) on lipopolysaccharide (LPS)/β-amyloid (Aβ)-induced neuroinflammation and microglial phagocytosis of Aβ were studied. We found that pretreatment of BV2 microglia with AdO prior [...] Read more.
Alginate from marine brown algae has been widely applied in biotechnology. In this work, the effects of alginate-derived oligosaccharide (AdO) on lipopolysaccharide (LPS)/β-amyloid (Aβ)-induced neuroinflammation and microglial phagocytosis of Aβ were studied. We found that pretreatment of BV2 microglia with AdO prior to LPS/Aβ stimulation led to a significant inhibition of production of nitric oxide (NO) and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and secretion of proinflammatory cytokines. We further demonstrated that AdO remarkably attenuated the LPS-activated overexpression of toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) and nuclear factor (NF)-κB in BV2 cells. In addition to the impressive inhibitory effect on neuroinflammation, we also found that AdO promoted the phagocytosis of Aβ through its interaction with TLR4 in microglia. Our results suggested that AdO exerted the inhibitory effect on neuroinflammation and the promotion effect on microglial phagocytosis, indicating its potential as a nutraceutical or therapeutic agent for neurodegenerative diseases, particularly Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Full article
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Open AccessArticle The Mucus of Actinia equina (Anthozoa, Cnidaria): An Unexplored Resource for Potential Applicative Purposes
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(8), 5276-5296; doi:10.3390/md13085276
Received: 16 June 2015 / Revised: 27 July 2015 / Accepted: 6 August 2015 / Published: 19 August 2015
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (1074 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The mucus produced by many marine organisms is a complex mixture of proteins and polysaccharides forming a weak watery gel. It is essential for vital processes including locomotion, navigation, structural support, heterotrophic feeding and defence against a multitude of environmental stresses, predators, [...] Read more.
The mucus produced by many marine organisms is a complex mixture of proteins and polysaccharides forming a weak watery gel. It is essential for vital processes including locomotion, navigation, structural support, heterotrophic feeding and defence against a multitude of environmental stresses, predators, parasites, and pathogens. In the present study we focused on mucus produced by a benthic cnidarian, the sea anemone Actinia equina (Linnaeus, 1758) for preventing burial by excess sedimentation and for protection. We investigated some of the physico-chemical properties of this matrix such as viscosity, osmolarity, electrical conductivity, protein, carbohydrate, and total lipid contents. Some biological activities such as hemolytic, cytotoxic, and antibacterial lysozyme-like activities were also studied. The A. equina mucus is mainly composed by water (96.2% ± 0.3%), whereas its dry weight is made of 24.2% ± 1.3% proteins and 7.8% ± 0.2% carbohydrates, with the smallest and largest components referable to lipids (0.9%) and inorganic matter (67.1%). The A. equina mucus matrix exhibited hemolytic activity on rabbit erythrocytes, cytotoxic activity against the tumor cell line K562 (human erythromyeloblastoid leukemia) and antibacterial lysozyme-like activity. The findings from this study improve the available information on the mucus composition in invertebrates and have implications for future investigations related to exploitation of A. equina and other sea anemones’ mucus as a source of bioactive compounds of high pharmaceutical and biotechnological interest. Full article
Open AccessReview Chitosan: An Update on Potential Biomedical and Pharmaceutical Applications
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(8), 5156-5186; doi:10.3390/md13085156
Received: 1 June 2015 / Revised: 28 July 2015 / Accepted: 6 August 2015 / Published: 14 August 2015
Cited by 19 | PDF Full-text (411 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Chitosan is a natural polycationic linear polysaccharide derived from chitin. The low solubility of chitosan in neutral and alkaline solution limits its application. Nevertheless, chemical modification into composites or hydrogels brings to it new functional properties for different applications. Chitosans are recognized [...] Read more.
Chitosan is a natural polycationic linear polysaccharide derived from chitin. The low solubility of chitosan in neutral and alkaline solution limits its application. Nevertheless, chemical modification into composites or hydrogels brings to it new functional properties for different applications. Chitosans are recognized as versatile biomaterials because of their non-toxicity, low allergenicity, biocompatibility and biodegradability. This review presents the recent research, trends and prospects in chitosan. Some special pharmaceutical and biomedical applications are also highlighted. Full article
Open AccessArticle Laminarin from Irish Brown Seaweeds Ascophyllum nodosum and Laminaria hyperborea: Ultrasound Assisted Extraction, Characterization and Bioactivity
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(7), 4270-4280; doi:10.3390/md13074270
Received: 14 April 2015 / Revised: 30 June 2015 / Accepted: 1 July 2015 / Published: 10 July 2015
Cited by 12 | PDF Full-text (466 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Ultrasound assisted extraction (UAE), purification, characterization and antioxidant activity of laminarin from Irish brown seaweeds Ascophyllum nodosum and Laminarina hyperborea were investigated. UAE was carried out using 60% ultrasonic power amplitude and 0.1 M hydrochloric acid for 15 min. Separately, solid-liquid extraction [...] Read more.
Ultrasound assisted extraction (UAE), purification, characterization and antioxidant activity of laminarin from Irish brown seaweeds Ascophyllum nodosum and Laminarina hyperborea were investigated. UAE was carried out using 60% ultrasonic power amplitude and 0.1 M hydrochloric acid for 15 min. Separately, solid-liquid extraction was carried in an orbital shaker using 0.1 M hydrochloric acid at 70 °C for 2.5 h. UAE with hydrochloric acid resulted in the highest concentration of laminarin, 5.82% and 6.24% on dry weight basis from A. nodosum and L. hyperborea, respectively. Purification of all extracts was carried out using molecular weight cut off dialysis at 10 kDa. Characterization of the laminarin fraction was carried out using matrix assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry. Antioxidant activity of A. nodosum and L. hyperborea extracts had 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) inhibition levels of 93.23% and 87.57%, respectively. Moreover, these extracts have shown inihibition of bacterial growth of Staphylcoccus aureus, Listeria monocytogenes, Escherichia coli and Salmonella typhimurium. Full article
Open AccessArticle Fucoidan Stimulates Monocyte Migration via ERK/p38 Signaling Pathways and MMP9 Secretion
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(7), 4156-4170; doi:10.3390/md13074156
Received: 26 May 2015 / Revised: 17 June 2015 / Accepted: 23 June 2015 / Published: 30 June 2015
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Abstract
Critical limb ischemia (CLI) induces the secretion of paracrine signals, leading to monocyte recruitment and thereby contributing to the initiation of angiogenesis and tissue healing. We have previously demonstrated that fucoidan, an antithrombotic polysaccharide, promotes the formation of new blood vessels in [...] Read more.
Critical limb ischemia (CLI) induces the secretion of paracrine signals, leading to monocyte recruitment and thereby contributing to the initiation of angiogenesis and tissue healing. We have previously demonstrated that fucoidan, an antithrombotic polysaccharide, promotes the formation of new blood vessels in a mouse model of hindlimb ischemia. We examined the effect of fucoidan on the capacity of peripheral blood monocytes to adhere and migrate. Monocytes negatively isolated with magnetic beads from peripheral blood of healthy donors were treated with fucoidan. Fucoidan induced a 1.5-fold increase in monocyte adhesion to gelatin (p < 0.05) and a five-fold increase in chemotaxis in Boyden chambers (p < 0.05). Fucoidan also enhanced migration 2.5-fold in a transmigration assay (p < 0.05). MMP9 activity in monocyte supernatants was significantly enhanced by fucoidan (p < 0.05). Finally, Western blot analysis of fucoidan-treated monocytes showed upregulation of ERK/p38 phosphorylation. Inhibition of ERK/p38 phosphorylation abrogated fucoidan enhancement of migration (p < 0.01). Fucoidan displays striking biological effects, notably promoting monocyte adhesion and migration. These effects involve the ERK and p38 pathways, and increased MMP9 activity. Fucoidan could improve critical limb ischemia by promoting monocyte recruitment. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Production of Chondroitin Sulphate from Head, Skeleton and Fins of Scyliorhinus canicula By-Products by Combination of Enzymatic, Chemical Precipitation and Ultrafiltration Methodologies
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(6), 3287-3308; doi:10.3390/md13063287
Received: 20 February 2015 / Accepted: 13 May 2015 / Published: 27 May 2015
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Abstract
This study illustrates the optimisation of the experimental conditions of three sequential steps for chondroitin sulphate (CS) recovery from three cartilaginous materials of Scyliorhinus canicula by-products. Optimum conditions of temperature and pH were first obtained for alcalase proteolysis of head cartilage (58 [...] Read more.
This study illustrates the optimisation of the experimental conditions of three sequential steps for chondroitin sulphate (CS) recovery from three cartilaginous materials of Scyliorhinus canicula by-products. Optimum conditions of temperature and pH were first obtained for alcalase proteolysis of head cartilage (58 °C/pH 8.5/0.1% (v/w)/10 h of hydrolysis). Then, similar optimal conditions were observed for skeletons and fin materials. Enzymatic hydrolysates were subsequently treated with a combination of alkaline hydroalcoholic saline solutions in order to improve the protein hydrolysis and the selective precipitation of CS. Ranges of 0.53–0.64 M (NaOH) and 1.14–1.20 volumes (EtOH) were the levels for optimal chemical treatment depending on the cartilage origin. Finally, selective purification and concentration of CS and protein elimination of samples obtained from chemical treatment, was assessed by a combination of ultrafiltration and diafiltration (UF-DF) techniques at 30 kDa. Full article
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Open AccessReview Seaweed Hydrocolloid Production: An Update on Enzyme Assisted Extraction and Modification Technologies
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(6), 3340-3359; doi:10.3390/md13063340
Received: 28 February 2015 / Accepted: 13 May 2015 / Published: 27 May 2015
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Abstract
Agar, alginate, and carrageenans are high-value seaweed hydrocolloids, which are used as gelation and thickening agents in different food, pharmaceutical, and biotechnological applications. The annual global production of these hydrocolloids has recently reached 100,000 tons with a gross market value just above [...] Read more.
Agar, alginate, and carrageenans are high-value seaweed hydrocolloids, which are used as gelation and thickening agents in different food, pharmaceutical, and biotechnological applications. The annual global production of these hydrocolloids has recently reached 100,000 tons with a gross market value just above US$ 1.1 billion. The techno-functional properties of the seaweed polysaccharides depend strictly on their unique structural make-up, notably degree and position of sulfation and presence of anhydro-bridges. Classical extraction techniques include hot alkali treatments, but recent research has shown promising results with enzymes. Current methods mainly involve use of commercially available enzyme mixtures developed for terrestrial plant material processing. Application of seaweed polysaccharide targeted enzymes allows for selective extraction at mild conditions as well as tailor-made modifications of the hydrocolloids to obtain specific functionalities. This review provides an update of the detailed structural features of κ-, ι-, λ-carrageenans, agars, and alginate, and a thorough discussion of enzyme assisted extraction and processing techniques for these hydrocolloids. Full article
Open AccessReview Marine Polysaccharides from Algae with Potential Biomedical Applications
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(5), 2967-3028; doi:10.3390/md13052967
Received: 10 March 2015 / Revised: 26 April 2015 / Accepted: 4 May 2015 / Published: 15 May 2015
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Abstract
There is a current tendency towards bioactive natural products with applications in various industries, such as pharmaceutical, biomedical, cosmetics and food. This has put some emphasis in research on marine organisms, including macroalgae and microalgae, among others. Polysaccharides with marine origin constitute [...] Read more.
There is a current tendency towards bioactive natural products with applications in various industries, such as pharmaceutical, biomedical, cosmetics and food. This has put some emphasis in research on marine organisms, including macroalgae and microalgae, among others. Polysaccharides with marine origin constitute one type of these biochemical compounds that have already proved to have several important properties, such as anticoagulant and/or antithrombotic, immunomodulatory ability, antitumor and cancer preventive, antilipidaemic and hypoglycaemic, antibiotics and anti-inflammatory and antioxidant, making them promising bioactive products and biomaterials with a wide range of applications. Their properties are mainly due to their structure and physicochemical characteristics, which depend on the organism they are produced by. In the biomedical field, the polysaccharides from algae can be used in controlled drug delivery, wound management, and regenerative medicine. This review will focus on the biomedical applications of marine polysaccharides from algae. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Antidiabetic Activity of Differently Regioselective Chitosan Sulfates in Alloxan-Induced Diabetic Rats
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(5), 3072-3090; doi:10.3390/md13053072
Received: 21 February 2015 / Revised: 8 April 2015 / Accepted: 4 May 2015 / Published: 15 May 2015
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Abstract
The present study investigated and compared the hypoglycemic activity of differently regioselective chitosan sulfates in alloxan-induced diabetic rats. Compared with the normal control rats, significantly higher blood glucose levels were observed in the alloxan-induced diabetic rats. The differently regioselective chitosan sulfates exhibited [...] Read more.
The present study investigated and compared the hypoglycemic activity of differently regioselective chitosan sulfates in alloxan-induced diabetic rats. Compared with the normal control rats, significantly higher blood glucose levels were observed in the alloxan-induced diabetic rats. The differently regioselective chitosan sulfates exhibited hypoglycemic activities at different doses and intervals, especially 3-O-sulfochitosan (3-S). The major results are as follows. First, 3,6-di-O-sulfochitosan and 3-O-sulfochitosan exhibited more significant hypoglycemic activities than 2-N-3, 6-di-O-sulfochitosan and 6-O-sulfochitosan. Moreover, 3-S-treated rats showed a more significant reduction of blood glucose levels than those treated by 3,6-di-O-sulfochitosan. These results indicated that –OSO3 at the C3-position of chitosan is a key active site. Second, 3-S significantly reduced the blood glucose levels and regulated the glucose tolerance effect in the experimental rats. Third, treatment with 3-S significantly increased the plasma insulin levels in the experimental diabetic rats. A noticeable hypoglycemic activity of 3-S in the alloxan-induced diabetic rats was shown. Clinical trials are required in the future to confirm the utility of 3-S. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Alginate Hydrogels Coated with Chitosan for Wound Dressing
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(5), 2890-2908; doi:10.3390/md13052890
Received: 24 February 2015 / Revised: 2 April 2015 / Accepted: 29 April 2015 / Published: 11 May 2015
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Abstract
In this work, a coating of chitosan onto alginate hydrogels was realized using the water-soluble hydrochloride form of chitosan (CH-Cl), with the dual purpose of imparting antibacterial activity and delaying the release of hydrophilic molecules from the alginate matrix. Alginate hydrogels with [...] Read more.
In this work, a coating of chitosan onto alginate hydrogels was realized using the water-soluble hydrochloride form of chitosan (CH-Cl), with the dual purpose of imparting antibacterial activity and delaying the release of hydrophilic molecules from the alginate matrix. Alginate hydrogels with different calcium contents were prepared by the internal setting method and coated by immersion in a CH-Cl solution. Structural analysis by cryo-scanning electron microscopy was carried out to highlight morphological alterations due to the coating layer. Tests in vitro with human mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) were assessed to check the absence of toxicity of CH-Cl. Swelling, stability in physiological solution and release characteristics using rhodamine B as the hydrophilic model drug were compared to those of relative uncoated hydrogels. Finally, antibacterial activity against Escherichia coli was tested. Results show that alginate hydrogels coated with chitosan hydrochloride described here can be proposed as a novel medicated dressing by associating intrinsic antimicrobial activity with improved sustained release characteristics. Full article
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Open AccessArticle λ-Carrageenan Suppresses Tomato Chlorotic Dwarf Viroid (TCDVd) Replication and Symptom Expression in Tomatoes
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(5), 2875-2889; doi:10.3390/md13052875
Received: 27 February 2015 / Revised: 18 April 2015 / Accepted: 27 April 2015 / Published: 8 May 2015
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Abstract
The effect of carrageenans on tomato chlorotic dwarf viroid (TCDVd) replication and symptom expression was studied. Three-week-old tomato plants were spray-treated with iota(ɩ)-, lambda(λ)-, and kappa(κ)-carrageenan at 1 g·L−1 and inoculated with TCDVd after 48 h. The λ-carrageenan significantly suppressed viroid [...] Read more.
The effect of carrageenans on tomato chlorotic dwarf viroid (TCDVd) replication and symptom expression was studied. Three-week-old tomato plants were spray-treated with iota(ɩ)-, lambda(λ)-, and kappa(κ)-carrageenan at 1 g·L−1 and inoculated with TCDVd after 48 h. The λ-carrageenan significantly suppressed viroid symptom expression after eight weeks of inoculation, only 28% plants showed distinctive bunchy-top symptoms as compared to the 82% in the control group. Viroid concentration was reduced in the infected shoot cuttings incubated in λ-carrageenan amended growth medium. Proteome analysis revealed that 16 tomato proteins were differentially expressed in the λ-carrageenan treated plants. Jasmonic acid related genes, allene oxide synthase (AOS) and lipoxygenase (LOX), were up-regulated in λ-carrageenan treatment during viroid infection. Taken together, our results suggest that λ-carrageenan induced tomato defense against TCDVd, which was partly jasmonic acid (JA) dependent, and that it could be explored in plant protection against viroid infection. Full article
Open AccessReview Perspective on the Use of Sulfated Polysaccharides from Marine Organisms as a Source of New Antithrombotic Drugs
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(5), 2770-2784; doi:10.3390/md13052770
Received: 26 February 2015 / Revised: 14 April 2015 / Accepted: 17 April 2015 / Published: 6 May 2015
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Abstract
Thromboembolic diseases are increasing worldwide and always require anticoagulant therapy. We still need safer and more secure antithrombotic drugs than those presently available. Sulfated polysaccharides from marine organisms may constitute a new source for the development of such drugs. Investigation of these [...] Read more.
Thromboembolic diseases are increasing worldwide and always require anticoagulant therapy. We still need safer and more secure antithrombotic drugs than those presently available. Sulfated polysaccharides from marine organisms may constitute a new source for the development of such drugs. Investigation of these compounds usually attempts to reproduce the therapeutic effects of heparin. However, we may need to follow different routes, focusing particularly in the following aspects: (1) defining precisely the specific structures required for interaction of these sulfated polysaccharides with proteins of the coagulation system; (2) looking for alternative mechanisms of action, distinct from those of heparin; (3) identifying side effects (mostly pro-coagulant action and hypotension rather than bleeding) and preparing derivatives that retain the desired antithrombotic action but are devoid of side effects; (4) considering that sulfated polysaccharides with low anticoagulant action on in vitro assays may display potent effects on animal models of experimental thrombosis; and finally (5) investigating the antithrombotic effect of these sulfated polysaccharides after oral administration or preparing derivatives that may achieve this effect. If these aspects are successfully addressed, sulfated polysaccharides from marine organisms may conquer the frontier of antithrombotic therapy and open new avenues for treatment or prevention of thromboembolic diseases. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Employment of Marine Polysaccharides to Manufacture Functional Biocomposites for Aquaculture Feeding Applications
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(5), 2680-2693; doi:10.3390/md13052680
Received: 3 March 2015 / Revised: 17 April 2015 / Accepted: 17 April 2015 / Published: 29 April 2015
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Abstract
In this study, polysaccharides of marine origin (agar, alginate and κ-carrageenan) were used to embed nutrients to fabricate biocomposites to be employed in animal feeding. The consistency of biocomposites in water has been evaluated up to 14 days, by several methods: swelling, [...] Read more.
In this study, polysaccharides of marine origin (agar, alginate and κ-carrageenan) were used to embed nutrients to fabricate biocomposites to be employed in animal feeding. The consistency of biocomposites in water has been evaluated up to 14 days, by several methods: swelling, nutrient release and granulometric analysis. Biocomposites were produced with varying percentages of nutrients (5%–25%) and polysaccharides (1%–2%–3%). All possible biopolymer combinations were tested in order to select those with the best network strength. The best performing biocomposites were those manufactured with agar 2% and nutrients 10%, showing the lowest percentage of water absorption and nutrient release. Biocomposites made of agar 2% and nutrients 10% were the most stable in water and were therefore used to analyze their behavior in water with respect to the release of quercetin, a phenolic compound with demonstrated high antibacterial and antioxidant activities. The leaching of such molecules in water was therefore employed as a further indicator of biocomposite water stability. Altogether, our results confirm the suitability of agar as a binder for biocomposites and provide a positive contribution to aquaculture. Full article
Open AccessArticle Chitin-Lignin Material as a Novel Matrix for Enzyme Immobilization
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(4), 2424-2446; doi:10.3390/md13042424
Received: 19 February 2015 / Revised: 23 March 2015 / Accepted: 27 March 2015 / Published: 20 April 2015
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Abstract
Innovative materials were made via the combination of chitin and lignin, and the immobilization of lipase from Aspergillus niger. Analysis by techniques including FTIR, XPS and 13C CP MAS NMR confirmed the effective immobilization of the enzyme on the surface [...] Read more.
Innovative materials were made via the combination of chitin and lignin, and the immobilization of lipase from Aspergillus niger. Analysis by techniques including FTIR, XPS and 13C CP MAS NMR confirmed the effective immobilization of the enzyme on the surface of the composite support. The electrokinetic properties of the resulting systems were also determined. Results obtained from elemental analysis and by the Bradford method enabled the determination of optimum parameters for the immobilization process. Based on the hydrolysis reaction of para-nitrophenyl palmitate, a determination was made of the catalytic activity, thermal and pH stability, and reusability. The systems with immobilized enzymes were found to have a hydrolytic activity of 5.72 mU, and increased thermal and pH stability compared with the native lipase. The products were also shown to retain approximately 80% of their initial catalytic activity, even after 20 reaction cycles. The immobilization process, using a cheap, non-toxic matrix of natural origin, leads to systems with potential applications in wastewater remediation processes and in biosensors. Full article
Open AccessArticle Seaweed Polysaccharides (Laminarin and Fucoidan) as Functional Ingredients in Pork Meat: An Evaluation of Anti-Oxidative Potential, Thermal Stability and Bioaccessibility
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(4), 2447-2464; doi:10.3390/md13042447
Received: 5 February 2015 / Revised: 28 March 2015 / Accepted: 30 March 2015 / Published: 20 April 2015
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Abstract
The anti-oxidative potential of laminarin (L), fucoidan (F) and an L/F seaweed extract was measured using the DPPH free radical scavenging assay, in 25% pork (longissimus thoracis et lumborum (LTL)) homogenates (TBARS) (3 and 6 mg/mL) and in horse heart oxymyoglobin [...] Read more.
The anti-oxidative potential of laminarin (L), fucoidan (F) and an L/F seaweed extract was measured using the DPPH free radical scavenging assay, in 25% pork (longissimus thoracis et lumborum (LTL)) homogenates (TBARS) (3 and 6 mg/mL) and in horse heart oxymyoglobin (OxyMb) (0.1 and 1 mg/mL). The DPPH activity of fresh and cooked minced LTL containing L (100 mg/g; L100), F100 and L/F100,300, and bioaccessibility post in vitro digestion (L/F300), was assessed. Theoretical cellular uptake of antioxidant compounds was measured in a transwell Caco-2 cell model. Laminarin displayed no activity and fucoidan reduced lipid oxidation but catalysed OxyMb oxidation. Fucoidan activity was lowered by cooking while the L/F extract displayed moderate thermal stability. A decrease in DPPH antioxidant activity of 44.15% and 36.63%, after 4 and 20 h respectively, indicated theoretical uptake of L/F antioxidant compounds. Results highlight the potential use of seaweed extracts as functional ingredients in pork. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Structural Analysis and Anticoagulant Activities of the Novel Sulfated Fucan Possessing a Regular Well-Defined Repeating Unit from Sea Cucumber
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(4), 2063-2084; doi:10.3390/md13042063
Received: 26 January 2015 / Revised: 25 March 2015 / Accepted: 26 March 2015 / Published: 13 April 2015
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Abstract
Sulfated fucans, the complex polysaccharides, exhibit various biological activities. Herein, we purified two fucans from the sea cucumbers Holothuria edulis and Ludwigothurea grisea. Their structures were verified by means of HPGPC, FT-IR, GC–MS and NMR. As a result, a novel structural [...] Read more.
Sulfated fucans, the complex polysaccharides, exhibit various biological activities. Herein, we purified two fucans from the sea cucumbers Holothuria edulis and Ludwigothurea grisea. Their structures were verified by means of HPGPC, FT-IR, GC–MS and NMR. As a result, a novel structural motif for this type of polymers is reported. The fucans have a unique structure composed of a central core of regular (1→2) and (1→3)-linked tetrasaccharide repeating units. Approximately 50% of the units from L. grisea (100% for H. edulis fucan) contain sides of oligosaccharides formed by nonsulfated fucose units linked to the O-4 position of the central core. Anticoagulant activity assays indicate that the sea cucumber fucans strongly inhibit human blood clotting through the intrinsic pathways of the coagulation cascade. Moreover, the mechanism of anticoagulant action of the fucans is selective inhibition of thrombin activity by heparin cofactor II. The distinctive tetrasaccharide repeating units contribute to the anticoagulant action. Additionally, unlike the fucans from marine alga, although the sea cucumber fucans have great molecular weights and affluent sulfates, they do not induce platelet aggregation. Overall, our results may be helpful in understanding the structure-function relationships of the well-defined polysaccharides from invertebrate as new types of safer anticoagulants. Full article
Open AccessReview The Potential of Chitosan and Its Derivatives in Prevention and Treatment of Age-Related Diseases
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(4), 2158-2182; doi:10.3390/md13042158
Received: 19 February 2015 / Revised: 23 March 2015 / Accepted: 26 March 2015 / Published: 13 April 2015
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Abstract
Age-related, diet-related and protein conformational diseases, such as atherosclerosis, diabetes mellitus, cancer, hypercholesterolemia, cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases are common in the elderly population. The potential of chitosan, chitooligosaccharides and their derivatives in prevention and treatment of age-related dysfunctions is reviewed and discussed [...] Read more.
Age-related, diet-related and protein conformational diseases, such as atherosclerosis, diabetes mellitus, cancer, hypercholesterolemia, cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases are common in the elderly population. The potential of chitosan, chitooligosaccharides and their derivatives in prevention and treatment of age-related dysfunctions is reviewed and discussed in this paper. The influence of oxidative stress, low density lipoprotein oxidation, increase of tissue stiffness, protein conformational changes, aging-associated chronic inflammation and their pathobiological significance have been considered. The chitosan-based functional food also has been reviewed. Full article
Open AccessArticle Prophylactic Administration of Fucoidan Represses Cancer Metastasis by Inhibiting Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) and Matrix Metalloproteinases (MMPs) in Lewis Tumor-Bearing Mice
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(4), 1882-1900; doi:10.3390/md13041882
Received: 12 February 2015 / Revised: 26 March 2015 / Accepted: 27 March 2015 / Published: 3 April 2015
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Abstract
Fucoidan, a heparin-like sulfated polysaccharide, is rich in brown algae. It has a wide assortment of protective activities against cancer, for example, induction of hepatocellular carcinoma senescence, induction of human breast and colon carcinoma apoptosis, and impediment of lung cancer cells migration [...] Read more.
Fucoidan, a heparin-like sulfated polysaccharide, is rich in brown algae. It has a wide assortment of protective activities against cancer, for example, induction of hepatocellular carcinoma senescence, induction of human breast and colon carcinoma apoptosis, and impediment of lung cancer cells migration and invasion. However, the anti-metastatic mechanism that fucoidan exploits remains elusive. In this report, we explored the effects of fucoidan on cachectic symptoms, tumor development, lung carcinoma cell spreading and proliferation, as well as expression of metastasis-associated proteins in the Lewis lung carcinoma (LLC) cells-inoculated mice model. We discovered that administration of fucoidan has prophylactic effects on mitigation of cachectic body weight loss and improvement of lung masses in tumor-inoculated mice. These desired effects are attributed to inhibition of LLC spreading and proliferation in lung tissues. Fucoidan also down-regulates expression of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), nuclear factor kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells (NF-κB) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). Moreover, the tumor-bearing mice supplemented with fucoidan indeed benefit from an ensemble of the chemo-phylacticity. The fact is that fucoidan significantly decreases viability, migration, invasion, and MMPs activities of LLC cells. In summary, fucoidan is suitable to act as a chemo-preventative agent for minimizing cachectic symptoms as well as inhibiting lung carcinoma metastasis through down-regulating metastatic factors VEGF and MMPs. Full article
Open AccessReview Stability of Chitosan—A Challenge for Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Applications
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(4), 1819-1846; doi:10.3390/md13041819
Received: 25 February 2015 / Revised: 19 March 2015 / Accepted: 20 March 2015 / Published: 1 April 2015
Cited by 11 | PDF Full-text (746 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Chitosan—one of the natural multifunctional polymers—due to its unique and versatile biological properties is regarded as a useful compound in medical and pharmaceutical technology. Recently, considerable research effort has been made in order to develop safe and efficient chitosan products. However, the [...] Read more.
Chitosan—one of the natural multifunctional polymers—due to its unique and versatile biological properties is regarded as a useful compound in medical and pharmaceutical technology. Recently, considerable research effort has been made in order to develop safe and efficient chitosan products. However, the problem of poor stability of chitosan-based systems restricts its practical applicability; thus, it has become a great challenge to establish sufficient shelf-life for chitosan formulations. Improved stability can be assessed by controlling the environmental factors, manipulating processing conditions (e.g., temperature), introducing a proper stabilizing compound, developing chitosan blends with another polymer, or modifying the chitosan structure using chemical or ionic agents. This review covers the influence of internal, environmental, and processing factors on the long-term stability of chitosan products. The aim of this paper is also to highlight the latest developments which enable the physicochemical properties of chitosan-based applications to be preserved upon storage. Full article
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Open AccessReview Recent Advances in Exopolysaccharides from Paenibacillus spp.: Production, Isolation, Structure, and Bioactivities
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(4), 1847-1863; doi:10.3390/md13041847
Received: 24 February 2015 / Revised: 23 March 2015 / Accepted: 25 March 2015 / Published: 1 April 2015
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Abstract
This review provides a comprehensive summary of the most recent developments of various aspects (i.e., production, purification, structure, and bioactivity) of the exopolysaccharides (EPSs) from Paenibacillus spp. For the production, in particular, squid pen waste was first utilized successfully to [...] Read more.
This review provides a comprehensive summary of the most recent developments of various aspects (i.e., production, purification, structure, and bioactivity) of the exopolysaccharides (EPSs) from Paenibacillus spp. For the production, in particular, squid pen waste was first utilized successfully to produce a high yield of inexpensive EPSs from Paenibacillus sp. TKU023 and P. macerans TKU029. In addition, this technology for EPS production is prevailing because it is more environmentally friendly. The Paenibacillus spp. EPSs reported from various references constitute a structurally diverse class of biological macromolecules with different applications in the broad fields of pharmacy, cosmetics and bioremediation. The EPS produced by P. macerans TKU029 can increase in vivo skin hydration and may be a new source of natural moisturizers with potential value in cosmetics. However, the relationships between the structures and activities of these EPSs in many studies are not well established. The contents and data in this review will serve as useful references for further investigation, production, structure and application of Paenibacillus spp. EPSs in various fields. Full article
Open AccessArticle Morphological and Proteomic Analyses Reveal that Unsaturated Guluronate Oligosaccharide Modulates Multiple Functional Pathways in Murine Macrophage RAW264.7 Cells
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(4), 1798-1818; doi:10.3390/md13041798
Received: 5 February 2015 / Revised: 15 March 2015 / Accepted: 20 March 2015 / Published: 30 March 2015
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Abstract
Alginate is a natural polysaccharide extracted from various species of marine brown algae. Alginate-derived guluronate oligosaccharide (GOS) obtained by enzymatic depolymerization has various pharmacological functions. Previous studies have demonstrated that GOS can trigger the production of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS)/nitric oxide [...] Read more.
Alginate is a natural polysaccharide extracted from various species of marine brown algae. Alginate-derived guluronate oligosaccharide (GOS) obtained by enzymatic depolymerization has various pharmacological functions. Previous studies have demonstrated that GOS can trigger the production of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS)/nitric oxide (NO), reactive oxygen species (ROS) and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α by macrophages and that it is involved in the nuclear factor (NF)-κB and mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase signaling pathways. To expand upon the current knowledge regarding the molecular mechanisms associated with the GOS-induced immune response in macrophages, comparative proteomic analysis was employed together with two-dimensional electrophoresis (2-DE), matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF/TOF MS) and Western blot verification. Proteins showing significant differences in expression in GOS-treated cells were categorized into multiple functional pathways, including the NF-κB signaling pathway and pathways involved in inflammation, antioxidant activity, glycolysis, cytoskeletal processes and translational elongation. Moreover, GOS-stimulated changes in the morphologies and actin cytoskeleton organization of RAW264.7 cells were also investigated as possible adaptations to GOS. This study is the first to reveal GOS as a promising agent that can modulate the proper balance between the pro- and anti-inflammatory immune responses, and it provides new insights into pharmaceutical applications of polysaccharides. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Structural Analysis and Anti-Complement Activity of Polysaccharides from Kjellmaniella crsaaifolia
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(3), 1360-1374; doi:10.3390/md13031360
Received: 15 January 2015 / Revised: 2 March 2015 / Accepted: 5 March 2015 / Published: 16 March 2015
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Abstract
Two polysaccharides, named KCA and KCW, were extracted from Kjellmaniella crassifolia using dilute hydrochloric acid and water, respectively. Composition analysis showed that these polysaccharides predominantly consisted of fucose, with galactose, mannose and glucuronic acid as minor components. After degradation and partial desulfation, [...] Read more.
Two polysaccharides, named KCA and KCW, were extracted from Kjellmaniella crassifolia using dilute hydrochloric acid and water, respectively. Composition analysis showed that these polysaccharides predominantly consisted of fucose, with galactose, mannose and glucuronic acid as minor components. After degradation and partial desulfation, electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS) was performed, which showed that the polysaccharides consisted of sulfated fucooligosaccharides, sulfated galactofucooligosaccharides and methyl glycosides of mono-sulfated/multi-sulfated fucooligosaccharides. The structures of the oligomeric fragments were further characterized by electrospray ionization collision-induced dissociation tandem mass spectrometry (ESI-CID-MS2 and ESI-CID-MS3). Moreover, the activity of KCA and KCW against the hemolytic activity of both the classical and alternative complement pathways was determined. The activity of KCA was found to be similar to KCW, suggesting that the method of extraction did not influence the activity. In addition, the degraded polysaccharides (DKCA and DKCW) displayed lower activity levels than the crude polysaccharides (KCA and KCW), indicating that molecular weight had an effect on activity. Moreover, the desulfated fractions (ds-DKCA and ds-DKCW) showed less or no activity, which confirmed that sulfate was important for activity. In conclusion, polysaccharides from K. crassifolia may be good candidates for the treatment of diseases involving the complement pathway. Full article
Open AccessArticle Acetylated Chitosan Oligosaccharides Act as Antagonists against Glutamate-Induced PC12 Cell Death via Bcl-2/Bax Signal Pathway
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(3), 1267-1289; doi:10.3390/md13031267
Received: 1 December 2014 / Revised: 8 February 2015 / Accepted: 9 February 2015 / Published: 12 March 2015
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Abstract
Chitosan oligosaccharides (COSs), depolymerized products of chitosan composed of β-(1→4) d-glucosamine units, have broad range of biological activities such as antitumour, antifungal, and antioxidant activities. In this study, peracetylated chitosan oligosaccharides (PACOs) and N-acetylated chitosan oligosaccharides (NACOs) were prepared from the [...] Read more.
Chitosan oligosaccharides (COSs), depolymerized products of chitosan composed of β-(1→4) d-glucosamine units, have broad range of biological activities such as antitumour, antifungal, and antioxidant activities. In this study, peracetylated chitosan oligosaccharides (PACOs) and N-acetylated chitosan oligosaccharides (NACOs) were prepared from the COSs by chemcal modification. The structures of these monomers were identified using NMR and ESI-MS spectra. Their antagonist effects against glutamate-induced PC12 cell death were investigated. The results showed that pretreatment of PC12 cells with the PACOs markedly inhibited glutamate-induced cell death in a concentration-dependent manner. The PACOs were better glutamate antagonists compared to the COSs and the NACOs, suggesting the peracetylation is essential for the neuroprotective effects of chitosan oligosaccharides. In addition, the PACOs pretreatment significantly reduced lactate dehydrogenase release and reactive oxygen species production. It also attenuated the loss of mitochondrial membrane potential. Further studies indicated that the PACOs inhibited glutamate-induced cell death by preventing apoptosis through depressing the elevation of Bax/Bcl-2 ratio and caspase-3 activation. These results suggest that PACOs might be promising antagonists against glutamate-induced neural cell death. Full article
Open AccessArticle Conformational Analysis of the Oligosaccharides Related to Side Chains of Holothurian Fucosylated Chondroitin Sulfates
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(2), 936-947; doi:10.3390/md13020936
Received: 8 December 2014 / Accepted: 3 February 2015 / Published: 12 February 2015
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Abstract
Anionic polysaccharides fucosylated chondroitin sulfates (FCS) from holothurian species were shown to affect various biological processes, such as metastasis, angiogenesis, clot formation, thrombosis, inflammation, and some others. To understand the mechanism of FCSs action, knowledge about their spatial arrangement is required. We [...] Read more.
Anionic polysaccharides fucosylated chondroitin sulfates (FCS) from holothurian species were shown to affect various biological processes, such as metastasis, angiogenesis, clot formation, thrombosis, inflammation, and some others. To understand the mechanism of FCSs action, knowledge about their spatial arrangement is required. We have started the systematic synthesis, conformational analysis, and study of biological activity of the oligosaccharides related to various fragments of these types of natural polysaccharides. In this communication, five molecules representing distinct structural fragments of chondroitin sulfate have been studied by means of molecular modeling and NMR. These are three disaccharides and two trisaccharides containing fucose and glucuronic acid residues with one sulfate group per each fucose residue or without it. Long-range C–H coupling constants were used for the verification of the theoretical models. The presence of two conformers for both linkage types was revealed. For the Fuc–GlA linkage, the dominant conformer was the same as described previously in a literature as the molecular dynamics (MD) average in a dodechasaccharide FCS fragment representing the backbone chain of the polysaccharide including GalNAc residues. This shows that the studied oligosaccharides, in addition to larger ones, may be considered as reliable models for Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationship (QSAR) studies to reveal pharmacophore fragments of FCS. Full article
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2014

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Open AccessArticle Preliminary Characterization, Antioxidant Properties and Production of Chrysolaminarin from Marine Diatom Odontella aurita
Mar. Drugs 2014, 12(9), 4883-4897; doi:10.3390/md12094883
Received: 26 June 2014 / Revised: 9 September 2014 / Accepted: 9 September 2014 / Published: 23 September 2014
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Abstract
A new chrysolaminarin, named CL2, with a molecular mass of 7.75 kDa, was purified from the marine diatom, Odontella aurita, using DEAE-52 cellulose anion-exchange chromatography and Sephadex G-200 gel-filtration chromatography. The monosaccharide and structural analysis revealed that CL2 was a glucan [...] Read more.
A new chrysolaminarin, named CL2, with a molecular mass of 7.75 kDa, was purified from the marine diatom, Odontella aurita, using DEAE-52 cellulose anion-exchange chromatography and Sephadex G-200 gel-filtration chromatography. The monosaccharide and structural analysis revealed that CL2 was a glucan mainly composed of glucose, which was linked by the β-d-(1→3) (main chain) and β-d-(1→6) (side chain) glycosidic bond, demonstrated by infrared spectroscopy (IR) and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR). The antioxidant activity tests revealed that the CL2 presented stronger hydroxyl radical scavenging activity with increasing concentrations, but less was effective on reducing power analysis and scavenging 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) radical. The influences of nitrogen concentration and light intensity on chrysolaminarin production of O. aurita were further investigated in a glass column photobioreactor, and a record high chrysolaminarin productivity of 306 mg L−1 day−1 was achieved. In conclusion, the chrysolaminarin CL2 from O. aurita may be explored as a natural antioxidant agent for application in aquaculture, food and pharmaceutical areas. Full article

2013

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Open AccessArticle Isolation and Structural Characterization of a Novel Antioxidant Mannoglucan from a Marine Bubble Snail, Bullacta exarata (Philippi)
Mar. Drugs 2013, 11(11), 4464-4477; doi:10.3390/md11114464
Received: 11 September 2013 / Revised: 12 October 2013 / Accepted: 12 October 2013 / Published: 11 November 2013
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (964 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Bullacta exarata is one of the most economically important aquatic species in China, noted for not only its delicious taste and nutritional value, but also for its pharmacological activities. In order to explore its potential in medical applications, a mannoglucan designated as [...] Read more.
Bullacta exarata is one of the most economically important aquatic species in China, noted for not only its delicious taste and nutritional value, but also for its pharmacological activities. In order to explore its potential in medical applications, a mannoglucan designated as BEPS-IB was isolated and purified from the foot muscle of B. exarata after papain digestion. Chemical composition analysis indicated BEPS-IB contained mainly d-glucose and d-mannose in a molar ratio of 1:0.52, with an average molecular weight of about 94 kDa. The linkage information was determined by methylation analysis, and the anomeric configuration and chain linkage were confirmed by IR and 2D NMR. The results indicated BEPS-IB was composed of Glcp6Manp heptasaccharide repeating unit in the backbone, with occasional branch chains of mannose residues (14%) occurring in the backbone mannose. Further antioxidant assay indicated BEPS-IB exhibited positive antioxidant activity in scavenging superoxide radicals and reducing power. This is the first report on the structure and bioactivity of the mannoglucan from the B. exarata. Full article
Open AccessReview Chondroitin Sulfate, Hyaluronic Acid and Chitin/Chitosan Production Using Marine Waste Sources: Characteristics, Applications and Eco-Friendly Processes: A Review
Mar. Drugs 2013, 11(3), 747-774; doi:10.3390/md11030747
Received: 17 December 2012 / Revised: 28 January 2013 / Accepted: 6 February 2013 / Published: 11 March 2013
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Abstract
In the last decade, an increasing number of glycosaminoglycans (GAGs), chitin and chitosan applications have been reported. Their commercial demands have been extended to different markets, such as cosmetics, medicine, biotechnology, food and textiles. Marine wastes from fisheries and aquaculture are susceptible [...] Read more.
In the last decade, an increasing number of glycosaminoglycans (GAGs), chitin and chitosan applications have been reported. Their commercial demands have been extended to different markets, such as cosmetics, medicine, biotechnology, food and textiles. Marine wastes from fisheries and aquaculture are susceptible sources for polymers but optimized processes for their recovery and production must be developed to satisfy such necessities. In the present work, we have reviewed different alternatives reported in the literature to produce and purify chondroitin sulfate (CS), hyaluronic acid (HA) and chitin/chitosan (CH/CHs) with the aim of proposing environmentally friendly processes by combination of various microbial, chemical, enzymatic and membranes strategies and technologies. Full article
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2012

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Open AccessArticle Effect of Fucoidan Extracted from Mozuku on Experimental Cartilaginous Tissue Injury
Mar. Drugs 2012, 10(11), 2560-2570; doi:10.3390/md10112560
Received: 20 August 2012 / Revised: 25 October 2012 / Accepted: 6 November 2012 / Published: 13 November 2012
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Abstract
We investigated the effect of fucoidan, a sulfated polysaccharide, on acceleration of healing of experimental cartilage injury in a rabbit model. An injured cartilage model was surgically created by introduction of three holes, one in the articular cartilage of the medial trochlea [...] Read more.
We investigated the effect of fucoidan, a sulfated polysaccharide, on acceleration of healing of experimental cartilage injury in a rabbit model. An injured cartilage model was surgically created by introduction of three holes, one in the articular cartilage of the medial trochlea and two in the trochlear sulcus of the distal femur. Rabbits in three experimental groups (F groups) were orally administered fucoidan of seven different molecular weights (8, 50, 146, 239, 330, 400, or 1000 kD) for 3 weeks by screening. Control (C group) rabbits were provided water ad libitum. After the experimental period, macroscopic examination showed that the degree of filling in the fucoidan group was higher than that in the C group. Histologically, the holes were filled by collagen fiber and fibroblasts in the C group, and by chondroblasts and fibroblasts in the F groups. Image analysis of Alcian blue- and safranin O-stained F-group specimens showed increased production of glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) and proteoglycans (PGs), respectively. Some injured holes were well repaired both macroscopically and microscopically and were filled with cartilage tissues; cartilage matrices such as PGs and GAGs were produced in groups F 50, F 146, and F 239. Thus, fucoidan administration enhanced morphologically healing of cartilage injury. Full article
Open AccessArticle Structural Analysis of a Heteropolysaccharide from Saccharina japonica by Electrospray Mass Spectrometry in Tandem with Collision-Induced Dissociation Tandem Mass Spectrometry (ESI-CID-MS/MS)
Mar. Drugs 2012, 10(10), 2138-2152; doi:10.3390/md10102138
Received: 17 August 2012 / Revised: 10 September 2012 / Accepted: 13 September 2012 / Published: 25 September 2012
Cited by 12 | PDF Full-text (1964 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
A fucoidan extracted from Saccharina japonica was fractionated by anion exchange chromatography. The most complex fraction F0.5 was degraded by dilute sulphuric acid and then separated by use of an activated carbon column. Fraction Y1 was fractionated by anion exchange and gel [...] Read more.
A fucoidan extracted from Saccharina japonica was fractionated by anion exchange chromatography. The most complex fraction F0.5 was degraded by dilute sulphuric acid and then separated by use of an activated carbon column. Fraction Y1 was fractionated by anion exchange and gel filtration chromatography while Fraction Y2 was fractionated by gel filtration chromatography. The fractions were determined by ESI-MS and analyzed by ESI-CID-MS/MS. It was concluded that F0.5 had a backbone of alternating 4-linked GlcA and 2-linked Man with the first Man residue from the nonreducing end accidentally sulfated at C6. In addition, F0.5 had a 3-linked glucuronan, in accordance with a previous report by NMR. Some other structural characteristics included GlcA 1→3 Man 1→4 GlcA, Man 1→3 GlcA 1→4 GlcA, Fuc 1→4 GlcA and Fuc 1→3 Fuc. Finally, it was shown that fucose was sulfated at C2 or C4 while galactose was sulfated at C2, C4 or C6. Full article

2011

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Open AccessReview Marine Polysaccharides in Microencapsulation and Application to Aquaculture: “From Sea to Sea”
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(12), 2572-2604; doi:10.3390/md9122572
Received: 10 October 2011 / Revised: 18 November 2011 / Accepted: 22 November 2011 / Published: 8 December 2011
Cited by 14 | PDF Full-text (852 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This review’s main objective is to discuss some physico-chemical features of polysaccharides as intrinsic determinants for the supramolecular structures that can efficiently provide encapsulation of drugs and other biological entities. Thus, the general characteristics of some basic polysaccharides are outlined in terms [...] Read more.
This review’s main objective is to discuss some physico-chemical features of polysaccharides as intrinsic determinants for the supramolecular structures that can efficiently provide encapsulation of drugs and other biological entities. Thus, the general characteristics of some basic polysaccharides are outlined in terms of their conformational, dynamic and thermodynamic properties. The analysis of some polysaccharide gelling properties is also provided, including the peculiarity of the charged polysaccharides. Then, the way the basic physical chemistry of polymer self-assembly is made in practice through the laboratory methods is highlighted. A description of the several literature procedures used to influence molecular interactions into the macroscopic goal of the encapsulation is given with an attempt at classification. Finally, a practical case study of specific interest, the use of marine polysaccharide matrices for encapsulation of vaccines in aquaculture, is reported. Full article
Open AccessArticle Sulfated-Polysaccharide Fraction from Red Algae Gracilaria caudata Protects Mice Gut Against Ethanol-Induced Damage
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(11), 2188-2200; doi:10.3390/md9112188
Received: 14 September 2011 / Revised: 17 October 2011 / Accepted: 24 October 2011 / Published: 2 November 2011
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Abstract
The aim of the present study was to investigate the gastroprotective activity of a sulfated-polysaccharide (PLS) fraction extracted from the marine red algae Gracilaria caudata and the mechanism underlying the gastroprotective activity. Male Swiss mice were treated with PLS (3, 10, 30 [...] Read more.
The aim of the present study was to investigate the gastroprotective activity of a sulfated-polysaccharide (PLS) fraction extracted from the marine red algae Gracilaria caudata and the mechanism underlying the gastroprotective activity. Male Swiss mice were treated with PLS (3, 10, 30 and 90 mg·kg−1, p.o.), and after 30 min, they were administered 50% ethanol (0.5 mL/25 g−1, p.o.). One hour later, gastric damage was measured using a planimeter. Samples of the stomach tissue were also obtained for histopathological assessment and for assays of glutathione (GSH) and malondialdehyde (MDA). Other groups were pretreated with l-NAME (10 mg·kg−1, i.p.), dl-propargylglycine (PAG, 50 mg·kg−1, p.o.) or glibenclamide (5 mg·kg−1, i.p.). After 1 h, PLS (30 mg·kg−1, p.o.) was administered. After 30 min, ethanol 50% was administered (0.5 mL/25g−1, p.o.), followed by sacrifice after 60 min. PLS prevented-ethanol-induced macroscopic and microscopic gastric injury in a dose-dependent manner. However, treatment with l-NAME or glibenclamide reversed this gastroprotective effect. Administration of propargylglycine did not influence the effect of PLS. Our results suggest that PLS has a protective effect against ethanol-induced gastric damage in mice via activation of the NO/KATP pathway. Full article
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Open AccessReview The Structural Diversity of Carbohydrate Antigens of Selected Gram-Negative Marine Bacteria
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(10), 1914-1954; doi:10.3390/md9101914
Received: 3 August 2011 / Revised: 7 September 2011 / Accepted: 13 September 2011 / Published: 14 October 2011
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Abstract
Marine microorganisms have evolved for millions of years to survive in the environments characterized by one or more extreme physical or chemical parameters, e.g., high pressure, low temperature or high salinity. Marine bacteria have the ability to produce a range of biologically [...] Read more.
Marine microorganisms have evolved for millions of years to survive in the environments characterized by one or more extreme physical or chemical parameters, e.g., high pressure, low temperature or high salinity. Marine bacteria have the ability to produce a range of biologically active molecules, such as antibiotics, toxins and antitoxins, antitumor and antimicrobial agents, and as a result, they have been a topic of research interest for many years. Among these biologically active molecules, the carbohydrate antigens, lipopolysaccharides (LPSs, O-antigens) found in cell walls of Gram-negative marine bacteria, show great potential as candidates in the development of drugs to prevent septic shock due to their low virulence. The structural diversity of LPSs is thought to be a reflection of the ability for these bacteria to adapt to an array of habitats, protecting the cell from being compromised by exposure to harsh environmental stress factors. Over the last few years, the variety of structures of core oligosaccharides and O-specific polysaccharides from LPSs of marine microrganisms has been discovered. In this review, we discuss the most recently encountered structures that have been identified from bacteria belonging to the genera Aeromonas, Alteromonas, Idiomarina, Microbulbifer, Pseudoalteromonas, Plesiomonas and Shewanella of the Gammaproteobacteria phylum; Sulfitobacter and Loktanella of the Alphaproteobactera phylum and to the genera Arenibacter, Cellulophaga, Chryseobacterium, Flavobacterium, Flexibacter of the Cytophaga-Flavobacterium-Bacteroides phylum. Particular attention is paid to the particular chemical features of the LPSs, such as the monosaccharide type, non-sugar substituents and phosphate groups, together with some of the typifying traits of LPSs obtained from marine bacteria. A possible correlation is then made between such features and the environmental adaptations undertaken by marine bacteria. Full article
Open AccessReview Therapies from Fucoidan; Multifunctional Marine Polymers
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(10), 1731-1760; doi:10.3390/md9101731
Received: 26 August 2011 / Revised: 22 September 2011 / Accepted: 26 September 2011 / Published: 30 September 2011
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Abstract
Published research on fucoidans increased three fold between 2000 and 2010. These algal derived marine carbohydrate polymers present numerous valuable bioactivities. This review discusses the role for fucoidan in the control of acute and chronic inflammation via selectin blockade, enzyme inhibition and [...] Read more.
Published research on fucoidans increased three fold between 2000 and 2010. These algal derived marine carbohydrate polymers present numerous valuable bioactivities. This review discusses the role for fucoidan in the control of acute and chronic inflammation via selectin blockade, enzyme inhibition and inhibiting the complement cascade. The recent data on toxicology and uptake of fucoidan is detailed together with a discussion on the comparative activities of fractions of fucoidan from different sources. Recent in vivo, in vitro and clinical research related to diverse clinical needs is discussed. Targets include osteoarthritis, kidney and liver disease, neglected infectious diseases, hemopoietic stem cell modulation, protection from radiation damage and treatments for snake envenomation. In recent years, the production of well characterized reproducible fucoidan fractions on a commercial scale has become possible making therapies from fucoidan a realizable goal. Full article
Open AccessReview Marine Polysaccharides: A Source of Bioactive Molecules for Cell Therapy and Tissue Engineering
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(9), 1664-1681; doi:10.3390/md9091664
Received: 22 July 2011 / Revised: 2 September 2011 / Accepted: 5 September 2011 / Published: 23 September 2011
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Abstract
The therapeutic potential of natural bioactive compounds such as polysaccharides, especially glycosaminoglycans, is now well documented, and this activity combined with natural biodiversity will allow the development of a new generation of therapeutics. Advances in our understanding of the biosynthesis, structure and [...] Read more.
The therapeutic potential of natural bioactive compounds such as polysaccharides, especially glycosaminoglycans, is now well documented, and this activity combined with natural biodiversity will allow the development of a new generation of therapeutics. Advances in our understanding of the biosynthesis, structure and function of complex glycans from mammalian origin have shown the crucial role of this class of molecules to modulate disease processes and the importance of a deeper knowledge of structure-activity relationships. Marine environment offers a tremendous biodiversity and original polysaccharides have been discovered presenting a great chemical diversity that is largely species specific. The study of the biological properties of the polysaccharides from marine eukaryotes and marine prokaryotes revealed that the polysaccharides from the marine environment could provide a valid alternative to traditional polysaccharides such as glycosaminoglycans. Marine polysaccharides present a real potential for natural product drug discovery and for the delivery of new marine derived products for therapeutic applications. Full article
Open AccessReview Biomedical Exploitation of Chitin and Chitosan via Mechano-Chemical Disassembly, Electrospinning, Dissolution in Imidazolium Ionic Liquids, and Supercritical Drying
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(9), 1510-1533; doi:10.3390/md9091510
Received: 26 July 2011 / Revised: 28 August 2011 / Accepted: 31 August 2011 / Published: 9 September 2011
Cited by 68 | PDF Full-text (644 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Recently developed technology permits to optimize simultaneously surface area, porosity, density, rigidity and surface morphology of chitin-derived materials of biomedical interest. Safe and ecofriendly disassembly of chitin has superseded the dangerous acid hydrolysis and provides higher yields and scaling-up possibilities: the chitosan [...] Read more.
Recently developed technology permits to optimize simultaneously surface area, porosity, density, rigidity and surface morphology of chitin-derived materials of biomedical interest. Safe and ecofriendly disassembly of chitin has superseded the dangerous acid hydrolysis and provides higher yields and scaling-up possibilities: the chitosan nanofibrils are finding applications in reinforced bone scaffolds and composite dressings for dermal wounds. Electrospun chitosan nanofibers, in the form of biocompatible thin mats and non-wovens, are being actively studied: composites of gelatin + chitosan + polyurethane have been proposed for cardiac valves and for nerve conduits; fibers are also manufactured from electrospun particles that self-assemble during subsequent freeze-drying. Ionic liquids (salts of alkylated imidazolium) are suitable as non-aqueous solvents that permit desirable reactions to occur for drug delivery purposes. Gel drying with supercritical CO2 leads to structures most similar to the extracellular matrix, even when the chitosan is crosslinked, or in combination with metal oxides of interest in orthopedics. Full article
Open AccessArticle Chitosan Nanoparticles Act as an Adjuvant to Promote both Th1 and Th2 Immune Responses Induced by Ovalbumin in Mice
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(6), 1038-1055; doi:10.3390/md9061038
Received: 1 May 2011 / Revised: 25 May 2011 / Accepted: 7 June 2011 / Published: 14 June 2011
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Abstract
The study was conducted to investigate the promoted immune response to ovalbumin in mice by chitosan nanoparticles (CNP) and its toxicity. CNP did not cause any mortality or side effects when mice were administered subcutaneously twice with a dose of 1.5 mg at 7-day intervals. Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) mice were immunized subcutaneously with 25 µg ovalbumin (OVA) alone or with 25 µg OVA dissolved in saline containing Quil A (10 µg), chitosan (CS) (50 µg) or CNP (12.5, 50 or 200 µg) on days 1 and 15. Two weeks after the secondary immunization, serum OVA-specific antibody titers, splenocyte proliferation, natural killer (NK) cell activity, and production and mRNA expression of cytokines from splenocytes were measured. The serum OVA-specific IgG, IgG1, IgG2a, and IgG2b antibody titers and Con A-, LPS-, and OVA-induced splenocyte proliferation were significantly enhanced by CNP (P < 0.05) as compared with OVA and CS groups. CNP also significantly promoted the production of Th1 (IL-2 and IFN-γ) and Th2 (IL-10) cytokines and up-regulated the mRNA expression of IL-2, IFN-γ and IL-10 cytokines in splenocytes from the immunized mice compared with OVA and CS groups. Besides, CNP remarkably increased the killing activities of NK cells activity (P < 0.05). The results suggested that CNP had a strong potential to increase both cellular and humoral immune responses and elicited a balanced Th1/Th2 response, and that CNP may be a safe and efficacious adjuvant candidate suitable for a wide spectrum of prophylactic and therapeutic vaccines. Full article

2010

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Open AccessArticle Nature and Lability of Northern Adriatic Macroaggregates
Mar. Drugs 2010, 8(9), 2480-2492; doi:10.3390/md8092480
Received: 22 July 2010 / Revised: 30 August 2010 / Accepted: 3 September 2010 / Published: 6 September 2010
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Abstract
The key organic constituents of marine macroaggregates (macrogels) of prevalently phytoplankton origin, periodically occurring in the northern Adriatic Sea, are proteins, lipids and especially polysaccharides. In this article, the reactivity of various macroaggregate fractions in relation to their composition in order to [...] Read more.
The key organic constituents of marine macroaggregates (macrogels) of prevalently phytoplankton origin, periodically occurring in the northern Adriatic Sea, are proteins, lipids and especially polysaccharides. In this article, the reactivity of various macroaggregate fractions in relation to their composition in order to decode the potentially »bioavailable« fractions is summarized and discussed. The enzymatic hydrolysis of the macroaggregate matrix, using α-amylase, β-glucosidase, protease, proteinase and lipase, revealed the simultaneous degradation of polysaccharides and proteins, while lipids seem largely preserved. In the fresh surface macroaggregate samples, a pronounced degradation of the α-glycosidic bond compared to β-linkages. Degradation of the colloidal fraction proceeded faster in the higher molecular weight (MW) fractions. N-containing polysaccharides can be important constituents of the higher MW fraction while the lower MW constituents can mostly be composed of poly- and oligosaccharides. Since the polysaccharide component in the higher MW fraction is more degradable compared to N‑containing polysaccharides, the higher MW fraction represents a possible path of organic nitrogen preservation. Enzymatic hydrolysis, using α-amylase and β-glucosidase, revealed the presence of α- and β-glycosidic linkages in all fractions with similar decomposition kinetics. Our results indicate that different fractions of macroaggregates are subjected to compositional selective reactivity with important implications for macroaggregate persistence in the seawater column and deposition. Full article
Open AccessReview Marine Polysaccharides in Pharmaceutical Applications: An Overview
Mar. Drugs 2010, 8(9), 2435-2465; doi:10.3390/md8092435
Received: 22 July 2010 / Revised: 19 August 2010 / Accepted: 20 August 2010 / Published: 2 September 2010
Cited by 101 | PDF Full-text (481 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The enormous variety of polysaccharides that can be extracted from marine plants and animal organisms or produced by marine bacteria means that the field of marine polysaccharides is constantly evolving. Recent advances in biological techniques allow high levels of polysaccharides of interest [...] Read more.
The enormous variety of polysaccharides that can be extracted from marine plants and animal organisms or produced by marine bacteria means that the field of marine polysaccharides is constantly evolving. Recent advances in biological techniques allow high levels of polysaccharides of interest to be produced in vitro. Biotechnology is a powerful tool to obtain polysaccharides from a variety of micro-organisms, by controlling the growth conditions in a bioreactor while tailoring the production of biologically active compounds. Following an overview of the current knowledge on marine polysaccharides, with special attention to potential pharmaceutical applications and to more recent progress on the discovering of new polysaccharides with biological appealing characteristics, this review will focus on possible strategies for chemical or physical modification aimed to tailor the final properties of interest. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Characterization of the Exopolysaccharide Produced by Salipiger mucosus A3T, a Halophilic Species Belonging to the Alphaproteobacteria, Isolated on the Spanish Mediterranean Seaboard
Mar. Drugs 2010, 8(8), 2240-2251; doi:10.3390/md8082240
Received: 8 June 2010 / Revised: 16 July 2010 / Accepted: 28 July 2010 / Published: 30 July 2010
Cited by 18 | PDF Full-text (188 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
We have studied the exopolysaccharide produced by the type strain of Salipiger mucosus, a species of halophilic, EPS-producing (exopolysaccharide-producing) bacterium belonging to the Alphaproteobacteria. The strain, isolated on the Mediterranean seaboard, produced a polysaccharide, mainly during its exponential growth phase but [...] Read more.
We have studied the exopolysaccharide produced by the type strain of Salipiger mucosus, a species of halophilic, EPS-producing (exopolysaccharide-producing) bacterium belonging to the Alphaproteobacteria. The strain, isolated on the Mediterranean seaboard, produced a polysaccharide, mainly during its exponential growth phase but also to a lesser extent during the stationary phase. Culture parameters influenced bacterial growth and EPS production. Yield was always directly related to the quantity of biomass in the culture. The polymer is a heteropolysaccharide with a molecular mass of 250 kDa and its components are glucose (19.7%, w/w), mannose (34%, w/w), galactose (32.9%, w/w) and fucose (13.4%, w/w). Fucose and fucose-rich oligosaccharides have applications in the fields of medicine and cosmetics. The chemical or enzymatic hydrolysis of fucose-rich polysaccharides offers a new efficient way to process fucose. The exopolysaccharide in question produces a solution of very low viscosity that shows pseudoplastic behavior and emulsifying activity on several hydrophobic substrates. It also has a high capacity for binding cations and incorporating considerable quantities of sulfates, this latter feature being very unusual in bacterial polysaccharides. Full article
Open AccessReview Prebiotics from Marine Macroalgae for Human and Animal Health Applications
Mar. Drugs 2010, 8(7), 2038-2064; doi:10.3390/md8072038
Received: 13 May 2010 / Revised: 11 June 2010 / Accepted: 28 June 2010 / Published: 1 July 2010
Cited by 89 | PDF Full-text (326 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The marine environment is an untapped source of bioactive compounds. Specifically, marine macroalgae (seaweeds) are rich in polysaccharides that could potentially be exploited as prebiotic functional ingredients for both human and animal health applications. Prebiotics are non-digestible, selectively fermented compounds that stimulate [...] Read more.
The marine environment is an untapped source of bioactive compounds. Specifically, marine macroalgae (seaweeds) are rich in polysaccharides that could potentially be exploited as prebiotic functional ingredients for both human and animal health applications. Prebiotics are non-digestible, selectively fermented compounds that stimulate the growth and/or activity of beneficial gut microbiota which, in turn, confer health benefits on the host. This review will introduce the concept and potential applications of prebiotics, followed by an outline of the chemistry of seaweed polysaccharides. Their potential for use as prebiotics for both humans and animals will be highlighted by reviewing data from both in vitro and in vivo studies conducted to date. Full article
Open AccessReview Bacterial Exopolysaccharides from Extreme Marine Habitats: Production, Characterization and Biological Activities
Mar. Drugs 2010, 8(6), 1779-1802; doi:10.3390/md8061779
Received: 8 May 2010 / Revised: 25 May 2010 / Accepted: 2 June 2010 / Published: 3 June 2010
Cited by 72 | PDF Full-text (350 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Many marine bacteria produce exopolysaccharides (EPS) as a strategy for growth, adhering to solid surfaces, and to survive adverse conditions. There is growing interest in isolating new EPS producing bacteria from marine environments, particularly from extreme marine environments such as deep-sea hydrothermal [...] Read more.
Many marine bacteria produce exopolysaccharides (EPS) as a strategy for growth, adhering to solid surfaces, and to survive adverse conditions. There is growing interest in isolating new EPS producing bacteria from marine environments, particularly from extreme marine environments such as deep-sea hydrothermal vents characterized by high pressure and temperature and heavy metal presence. Marine EPS-producing microorganisms have been also isolated from several extreme niches such as the cold marine environments typically of Arctic and Antarctic sea ice, characterized by low temperature and low nutrient concentration, and the hypersaline marine environment found in a wide variety of aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems such as salt lakes and salterns. Most of their EPSs are heteropolysaccharides containing three or four different monosaccharides arranged in groups of 10 or less to form the repeating units. These polymers are often linear with an average molecular weight ranging from 1 × 105 to 3 × 105 Da. Some EPS are neutral macromolecules, but the majority of them are polyanionic for the presence of uronic acids or ketal-linked pyruvate or inorganic residues such as phosphate or sulfate. EPSs, forming a layer surrounding the cell, provide an effective protection against high or low temperature and salinity, or against possible predators. By examining their structure and chemical-physical characteristics it is possible to gain insight into their commercial application, and they are employed in several industries. Indeed EPSs produced by microorganisms from extreme habitats show biotechnological promise ranging from pharmaceutical industries, for their immunomodulatory and antiviral effects, bone regeneration and cicatrizing capacity, to food-processing industries for their peculiar gelling and thickening properties. Moreover, some EPSs are employed as biosurfactants and in detoxification mechanisms of petrochemical oil-polluted areas. The aim of this paper is to give an overview of current knowledge on EPSs produced by marine bacteria including symbiotic marine EPS-producing bacteria isolated from some marine annelid worms that live in extreme niches. Full article
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Open AccessCommunication Anti-Inflammatory Activity of Chitooligosaccharides in Vivo
Mar. Drugs 2010, 8(6), 1763-1768; doi:10.3390/md8061763
Received: 15 April 2010 / Revised: 14 May 2010 / Accepted: 26 May 2010 / Published: 28 May 2010
Cited by 24 | PDF Full-text (133 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
All the reports to date on the anti-inflammatory activity of chitooligosaccharides (COS) are mostly based on in vitro methods. In this work, the anti-inflammatory activity of two COS mixtures is characterized in vivo (using balb/c mice), following the carrageenan-induced paw edema method. [...] Read more.
All the reports to date on the anti-inflammatory activity of chitooligosaccharides (COS) are mostly based on in vitro methods. In this work, the anti-inflammatory activity of two COS mixtures is characterized in vivo (using balb/c mice), following the carrageenan-induced paw edema method. This is a widely accepted animal model of acute inflammation to evaluate the anti-inflammatory effect of drugs. Our data suggest that COS possess anti-inflammatoryactivity, which is dependent on dose and, at higher doses, also on the molecular weight. A single dose of 500 mg/kg b.w. weight may be suitable to treat acute inflammation cases; however, further studies are needed to ascertain the effect upon longer inflammation periods as well as studies upon the bioavailability of these compounds. Full article

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