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Mar. Drugs 2018, 16(11), 431;

Fishing for Targets of Alien Metabolites: A Novel Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor (PPAR) Agonist from a Marine Pest

Institute of Biomolecular Chemistry, National Research Council of Italy, 80078 Pozzuoli, Italy
Department of Biology and Evolution of Marine Organisms, Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn, 80121 Naples, Italy
Department of Life and Environmental Sciences, Polytechnic University of Marche, 60131 Ancona, Italy
Faculty of Medicine, Laval University, Quebec, QC G1V 0A6, Canada
Department of Agriculture, University of Naples “Federico II”, 80055 Portici, Italy
Department of Biology, University of Naples “Federico II”, 80126 Naples, Italy
The National Interuniversity Consortium For Marine Sciences (CoNISMa), 00198 Rome, Italy
Department of Life sciences, University of Trieste, 34128 Trieste, Italy
Department of Pharmacy, University of Naples “Federico II”, 80131 Naples, Italy
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 17 October 2018 / Revised: 30 October 2018 / Accepted: 1 November 2018 / Published: 3 November 2018
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Although the chemical warfare between invasive and native species has become a central problem in invasion biology, the molecular mechanisms by which bioactive metabolites from invasive pests influence local communities remain poorly characterized. This study demonstrates that the alkaloid caulerpin (CAU)—a bioactive component of the green alga Caulerpa cylindracea that has invaded the entire Mediterranean basin—is an agonist of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs). Our interdisciplinary study started with the in silico prediction of the ligand-protein interaction, which was then validated by in vivo, ex vivo and in vitro assays. On the basis of these results, we candidate CAU as a causal factor of the metabolic and behavioural disorders observed in Diplodus sargus, a native edible fish of high ecological and commercial relevance, feeding on C. cylindracea. Moreover, given the considerable interest in PPAR activators for the treatment of relevant human diseases, our findings are also discussed in terms of a possible nutraceutical/pharmacological valorisation of the invasive algal biomasses, supporting an innovative strategy for conserving biodiversity as an alternative to unrealistic campaigns for the eradication of invasive pests. View Full-Text
Keywords: biological invasions; Mediterranean; Caulerpa cylindracea; caulerpin; molecular interactions; PPAR biological invasions; Mediterranean; Caulerpa cylindracea; caulerpin; molecular interactions; PPAR

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Vitale, R.M.; D'Aniello, E.; Gorbi, S.; Martella, A.; Silvestri, C.; Giuliani, M.E.; Fellous, T.; Gentile, A.; Carbone, M.; Cutignano, A.; Grauso, L.; Magliozzi, L.; Polese, G.; D'Aniello, B.; Defranoux, F.; Felline, S.; Terlizzi, A.; Calignano, A.; Regoli, F.; Di Marzo, V.; Amodeo, P.; Mollo, E. Fishing for Targets of Alien Metabolites: A Novel Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor (PPAR) Agonist from a Marine Pest. Mar. Drugs 2018, 16, 431.

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