Marine biotechnology (New York, N.Y.)

Inhibitory effects of a branched-chain fatty acid on larval settlement of the polychaete Hydroides elegans.

PMID 19030931


Eleven strains of Streptomyces isolated from deep-sea sediments were screened for anti-larval settlement activity and all were active. Among those strains, Streptomyces sp. UST040711-290 was chosen for the isolation of bioactive antifouling compounds through bioassay-guided isolation procedure. A branched-chain fatty acid, 12-methyltetradecanoid acid (12-MTA) was purified, and it strongly inhibited the larval settlement of the polychaete Hydroides elegans. Streptomyces sp. UST040711-290 produced the highest yield of 12-MTA when the bacterium was cultured at 30 degrees C and pH 7.0 in a modified MGY medium. To investigate the potential antifouling mechanism of 12-MTA in the larval settlement of Hydroides elegans, the expression level of four marker genes, namely, Ran GTPase activating protein (GAP), ATP synthase (AS), NADH dehydrogenase (ND), and cell division cycle protein (CDC), was compared among the untreated larvae (the control), isobutylmethylxanthine (an effective settlement inducer), and 12-MTA-treated larvae. The 12-MTA treatment down-regulated the expression of GAP and up-regulated the expression of AS in the H. elegans larvae, but did not affect the expression of ND and CDC. This study provides the first evidence that a branched-chain fatty acid produced by a marine bacterium isolated from deep-sea sediment effectively inhibited the larval settlement of the biofouling polychaete H. elegans and its effects on the expression of genes important for larval settlement.

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12-Methyltetradecanoic acid