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Special Issue "Biological Potential of Marine and Terrestrial Species"

A special issue of Molecules (ISSN 1420-3049).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 December 2018

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Paula B. Andrade

REQUIMTE/LAQV, Laboratory of Pharmacognosy, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Porto, Rua de Jorge Viterbo Ferreira 228, Porto 4050-313, Portugal
Website | E-Mail
Fax: +351-226093390
Interests: metabolite profiling of natural matrices; natural agents for inflammation; neurodegenerative disorders
Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Patrícia Valentão

REQUIMTE/LAQV, Laboratory of Pharmacognosy, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Porto, Rua de Jorge Viterbo Ferreira 228, Porto 4050-313, Portugal
Website | E-Mail
Fax: +351-226093390
Interests: metabolite profiling of natural matrices; evaluation of bioactive agents from natural sources

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The search for novel bioactive compounds in natural sources has been increasingly receiving a great amount of attention, driven by the need of finding alternatives with higher efficacy, and less undesirable effects than those currently used in therapeutics. Despite the historical value of terrestrial species, plants, in particular, being the most prolific source of bioactive molecules, sea contains a genetic diversity that is superior to land, comprising living organisms that could be responsible for the production of unknown compounds that might give a significant contribution to drug discovery.

This Special Issue will focus several aspects related to the bioactivity of both plant and animal species, covering from well characterized extracts to isolated compounds, primary and secondary metabolism, bioavailability and toxicological features, by exploring the relevant current scientific research to provide a general perspective of this broad area.

Prof. Dr. Paula B. Andrade
Prof. Dr. Patrícia Valentão
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Molecules is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

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). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Natural products
  • Plants
  • Macroinvertebrates
  • Seaweeds
  • Bioactivity
  • Drug discovery

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Anti-Bacterial Adhesion Activity of Tropical Microalgae Extracts
Molecules 2018, 23(9), 2180; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23092180
Received: 17 July 2018 / Revised: 27 August 2018 / Accepted: 29 August 2018 / Published: 29 August 2018
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Abstract
The evolution of regulations concerning biocidal products aimed towards an increased protection of the environment (e.g., EU Regulation No 528/2012) requires the development of new non-toxic anti-fouling (AF) systems. As the marine environment is an important source of inspiration, such AF systems inhibiting
[...] Read more.
The evolution of regulations concerning biocidal products aimed towards an increased protection of the environment (e.g., EU Regulation No 528/2012) requires the development of new non-toxic anti-fouling (AF) systems. As the marine environment is an important source of inspiration, such AF systems inhibiting the adhesion of organisms without any toxicity could be based on molecules of natural origin. In this context, the antibiofilm potential of tropical microalgal extracts was investigated. The tropics are particularly interesting in terms of solar energy and temperatures which provide a wide marine diversity and a high production of microalgae. Twenty microalgal strains isolated from the Indian Ocean were studied. Their extracts were characterized in terms of global chemical composition by high resolution magic angle spinning (HR-MAS) and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, toxicity against marine bacteria (viability and growth) and anti-adhesion effect. The different observations made by confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM) showed a significant activity of three extracts from Dinoflagellate strains against the settlement of selected marine bacteria without any toxicity at a concentration of 50 μg/mL. The Symbiodinium sp. (P-78) extract inhibited the adhesion of Bacillus sp. 4J6 (Atlantic Ocean), Shewanella sp. MVV1 (Indian Ocean) and Pseudoalteromonas lipolytica TC8 (Mediterranean Ocean) at 60, 76 and 52%, respectively. These results underlined the potential of using microalgal extracts to repel fouling organisms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Potential of Marine and Terrestrial Species)
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Open AccessArticle Synergistic Effect of Bioactive Anticarcinogens from Soybean on Anti-Proliferative Activity in MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7 Human Breast Cancer Cells In Vitro
Molecules 2018, 23(7), 1557; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23071557
Received: 9 May 2018 / Revised: 16 June 2018 / Accepted: 20 June 2018 / Published: 27 June 2018
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Abstract
Consumption of soybean products has been implicated in the prevention of breast cancer. This study provides insights into the anti-proliferative activity of 12 anticarcinogens from soybean by single or two-way combination treatment against MCF-7 and MDA-MB-231 human breast cancer cells. Results showed that
[...] Read more.
Consumption of soybean products has been implicated in the prevention of breast cancer. This study provides insights into the anti-proliferative activity of 12 anticarcinogens from soybean by single or two-way combination treatment against MCF-7 and MDA-MB-231 human breast cancer cells. Results showed that genistein, daidzein, glycitein, genistin and dainzin showed stronger anti-proliferative activity against MCF-7 cells with EC50 values of 66.98 ± 4.87 μM, 130.14 ± 2.10 μM, 190.67 ± 5.65 μM, 72.82 ± 2.66 μM and 179.21 ± 6.37 μM, respectively. There is a synergistic effect of combination treatment of genistin plus daidzin in MCF-7 cells with combination index at inhibition of 50% (CI50) of 0.89 ± 0.12. Genistein, glycitein, genistin and β-sitosterol were demonstrated to have a stronger anti-proliferative activity against MDA-MB-231 cells with EC50 values of 93.75 ± 5.15 μM, 142.67 ± 5.88 μM, 127.82 ± 4.70 μM and 196.28 ± 4.45 μM. The synergistic effect was observed in the mixture of genistein plus genistin, genistein plus β-sitosterol or β-sitosterol plus genistin with CI50 values of 0.56 ± 0.13, 0.54 ± 0.20 and 0.45 ± 0.12, respectively. These bioactive anticarcinogens were able to inhibit invasion and migration of breast cancer cells and the combination treatments enhanced the inhibitory effect. Regulation of PI3K/Akt/mTORpathway seems to be the main mechanisms involved in the anticancer activity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Potential of Marine and Terrestrial Species)
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Graphical abstract

Open AccessArticle Phenolic and Nonpolar Fractions of Elaeagnus rhamnoides (L.) A. Nelson Extracts as Virulence Modulators—In Vitro Study on Bacteria, Fungi, and Epithelial Cells
Molecules 2018, 23(7), 1498; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23071498
Received: 15 May 2018 / Revised: 15 June 2018 / Accepted: 18 June 2018 / Published: 21 June 2018
PDF Full-text (1106 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Butanol extracts from leaves, twigs, and fruits of Elaeagnus rhamnoides (L.) A. Nelson (sea buckthorn, SBT) were fractionated into phenolic and nonpolar lipid components, the chemical composition of which was analyzed. Assuming that an effect on natural microbiota and host epithelial cells needs
[...] Read more.
Butanol extracts from leaves, twigs, and fruits of Elaeagnus rhamnoides (L.) A. Nelson (sea buckthorn, SBT) were fractionated into phenolic and nonpolar lipid components, the chemical composition of which was analyzed. Assuming that an effect on natural microbiota and host epithelial cells needs to be assessed, regardless of the purpose of using SBT formulations in vivo, the minimal inhibitory/biocidal/fungicidal concentrations (MICs/MBCs/MFCs) of the fractions and reference phytocompounds were screened, involving 17 species of Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria and Candida species. The MICs of SBT extracts were in the range of 0.25–2.0 mg∙mL−1. Since direct antimicrobial activity of the extracts was quite low and variable, the impact of subMIC on the important in vivo persistence properties of model microorganisms S. aureus and C. albicans was evaluated. Tests for adhesion and biofilm formation on an abiotic surface and on surfaces conditioned with fibrinogen, collagen, plasma, or artificial saliva showed the inhibitory activity of the fractions. The effects on fluorescein isothiocyanate (FITC)-labeled staphylococci adhesion to fibroblasts (HFF-1) and epithelial cells (Caco-2), and on fungal morphogenesis, indicated that SBT extracts have high antivirulence potential. Cytotoxicity tests (MTT reduction) on the standard fibroblast cell line showed variable biological safety of the fractions depending on their composition and concentration. The new information afforded by this study, additional to that already known, is of potential practical value in the application of SBT-derived preparations as antivirulence agents. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Potential of Marine and Terrestrial Species)
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Graphical abstract

Open AccessArticle Identification of a 3-Alkylpyridinium Compound from the Red Sea Sponge Amphimedon chloros with In Vitro Inhibitory Activity against the West Nile Virus NS3 Protease
Molecules 2018, 23(6), 1472; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23061472
Received: 21 May 2018 / Revised: 12 June 2018 / Accepted: 15 June 2018 / Published: 18 June 2018
PDF Full-text (2005 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Viruses are underrepresented as targets in pharmacological screening efforts, given the difficulties of devising suitable cell-based and biochemical assays. In this study we found that a pre-fractionated organic extract of the Red Sea sponge Amphimedon chloros was able to inhibit the West Nile
[...] Read more.
Viruses are underrepresented as targets in pharmacological screening efforts, given the difficulties of devising suitable cell-based and biochemical assays. In this study we found that a pre-fractionated organic extract of the Red Sea sponge Amphimedon chloros was able to inhibit the West Nile Virus NS3 protease (WNV NS3). Using liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry (LC-MS) and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, the identity of the bioactive compound was determined as a 3-alkylpyridinium with m/z = 190.16. Diffusion Ordered Spectroscopy (DOSY) NMR and NMR relaxation rate analysis suggest that the bioactive compound forms oligomers of up to 35 kDa. We observed that at 9.4 μg/mL there was up to 40–70% inhibitory activity on WNV NS3 protease in orthogonal biochemical assays for solid phase extracts (SPE) of A. chloros. However, the LC-MS purified fragment was effective at inhibiting the protease up to 95% at an approximate amount of 2 µg/mL with negligible cytotoxicity to HeLa cells based on a High-Content Screening (HCS) cytological profiling strategy. To date, 3-alkylpyridinium type natural products have not been reported to show antiviral activity since the first characterization of halitoxin, or 3-alkylpyridinium, in 1978. This study provides the first account of a 3-alkylpyridinium complex that exhibits a proposed antiviral activity by inhibiting the NS3 protease. We suggest that the here-described compound can be further modified to increase its stability and tested in a cell-based assay to explore its full potential as a potential novel antiviral capable of inhibiting WNV replication. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Potential of Marine and Terrestrial Species)
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Graphical abstract

Open AccessArticle Sinularin Selectively Kills Breast Cancer Cells Showing G2/M Arrest, Apoptosis, and Oxidative DNA Damage
Molecules 2018, 23(4), 849; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23040849
Received: 7 February 2018 / Revised: 5 April 2018 / Accepted: 6 April 2018 / Published: 8 April 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (17318 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Correction
Abstract
The natural compound sinularin, isolated from marine soft corals, is antiproliferative against several cancers, but its possible selective killing effect has rarely been investigated. This study investigates the selective killing potential and mechanisms of sinularin-treated breast cancer cells. In 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-5-(3-carboxymethoxyphenyl)-2-(4-sulfophenyl)-2H- tetrazolium, inner salt
[...] Read more.
The natural compound sinularin, isolated from marine soft corals, is antiproliferative against several cancers, but its possible selective killing effect has rarely been investigated. This study investigates the selective killing potential and mechanisms of sinularin-treated breast cancer cells. In 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-5-(3-carboxymethoxyphenyl)-2-(4-sulfophenyl)-2H- tetrazolium, inner salt (MTS) assay, sinularin dose-responsively decreased the cell viability of two breast cancer (SKBR3 and MDA-MB-231) cells, but showed less effect on breast normal (M10) cells after a 24 h treatment. According to 7-aminoactinomycin D (7AAD) flow cytometry, sinularin dose-responsively induced the G2/M cycle arrest of SKBR3 cells. Sinularin dose-responsively induced apoptosis on SKBR3 cells in terms of a flow cytometry-based annexin V/7AAD assay and pancaspase activity, as well as Western blotting for cleaved forms of poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP), caspases 3, 8, and 9. These caspases and PARP activations were suppressed by N-acetylcysteine (NAC) pretreatment. Moreover, sinularin dose-responsively induced oxidative stress and DNA damage according to flow cytometry analyses of reactive oxygen species (ROS), mitochondrial membrane potential (MitoMP), mitochondrial superoxide, and 8-oxo-2′-deoxyguanosine (8-oxodG)). In conclusion, sinularin induces selective killing, G2/M arrest, apoptosis, and oxidative DNA damage of breast cancer cells. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Potential of Marine and Terrestrial Species)
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Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title: Drug Discovery and Medicinal Properties of Caribbean Plants
Article type: Article
Author: Claudia Ospina-Millan

Title: Anti-arthritis effect through anti-inflammatory effect of Sargassum muticum extract in Collagen Induced Arthritis (CIA) mice
Article type: Original research article
Authors: Ph.D H.L Jeon, Ph.D Y.J.Yoon, and Prof. Se Chan Kang
Affiliations: Department of Oriental Medicine Biotechnology, KyungHee University
Abstract: Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic autoimmune disease that causes progressive articular damage, functional loss. It is characterized by synovial inflammation that leads to progressive cartilage destruction. These inflammation cause redness and edema in the joints. For this reason, research is continuing on functional foods that reduce the inflammatory response. We focused on anti-inflammatory effects of Sargassum muticum, and confirmed the effect of extract on collagen-induced arthritis DBA/1J mice model. The extract was given at concentrations of 50, 100 and 200 mg/kg, and the arthritis score and edema volume were significantly different from the vehicle group. The level of IL-6, TNF-α and IFN-γ was determined in serum and splenocytes. The expression of these cytokines in the serum was remarkably decreased from 100 mg/kg, and it was confirmed that it was noticeably decreased at 200 mg/kg in splenocytes. Also, Immunohistochemical analysis of IL-6 and TNF-α in the joints revealed that the inflammatory response was noticeably low when treated with Sargassum muticum extract. This study provides results for Sargassum muticum extract, which can contribute to the alleviation of edema and symptoms by reducing the expression of inflammatory cytokines, and suggesting that it may be a useful substance to help in relief of symptoms.

 

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