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Special Issue "Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue)"

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A special issue of Marine Drugs (ISSN 1660-3397).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 May 2014)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Dr. Takashi Maoka

Research Institute for Production Development, 15 Shimogamo-morimoto-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto 606-0805, Japan
Phone: +81-75-781-1107
Fax: +81 757 917659
Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Kazuo Miyashita

Bio-functional Material Chemistry, Faculty of Fisheries Sciences, Hokkaido University, Hakodate 041-8611, Japan
Phone: +81 138 408804
Fax: +81 138 408804

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Carotenoids represent a large group of isoprenoid structures with many different structural characteristics and biological activities. They are the most important pigments among those occurring in the nature that are responsible for various colors of different fruits, vegetables and plant parts. Marine carotenoids are also responsible for the color of many fish and shellfish products. However, there has been a relatively little information on the impact of marine carotenoids on human health, while there have been so many papers and reviews on carotenoids from terrestrial origin.

The potential beneficial effects of marine carotenoids have been particularly focused on astaxanthin and fucoxanthin, as they are major marine carotenoids. Both carotenoids show strong antioxidant activity which is attributed to quenching singlet oxygen and scavenging free radicals. The potential role of the carotenoids as dietary antioxidants has been suggested as being one of the main mechanisms for their preventive effects against cancer and inflammatory et al. However, it will be difficult to explain their biological activities only by antioxidant activity. Other mechanisms of action that are independent of their antioxidant properties are also likely to be important. The mechanisms should be based on the regulatory effect of marine carotenoids on particular bio-molecules. This activity of carotenoids is responsible for the characteristic chemical structures which differ depending on the length of the polyene, nature of the end group and various substituent they contain.

This special issue of Marine Drugs is dedicated to marine carotenoids, and will be focused on the benefits of carotenoids to human being. For better understanding the physiological effects of marine carotenoids this issue should involve the most recent developments in presence, analysis, chemistry, and biochemistry of marine caroetnoids. We am very happy and honored to serve as a Guest Editor for this special issue, and would like to invite scientists to report their findings or review the recent literature on various aspects of marine carotenoids. I sincerely hope that this special issue will encourage other scientists to work on the exciting field of marine carotenoids.

Prof. Dr. Kazuo Miyashita
Dr. Takashi Maoka
Guest Editors

http://www.mdpi.com/journal/marinedrugs/special_issues/marine_carotenoids_collection

Submission

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. Papers will be published continuously (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as 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 refereed through a peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Marine Drugs 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).

Keywords

  • marine carotenoids
  • distribution
  • biosyntheis
  • absorption
  • metabolism
  • bioavailability
  • antioxidant activity
  • anti-cancer
  • prevention of cardiovascular disease
  • anti-atherosclerosis
  • anti-obesity
  • anti-diabetes
  • anti-inflammatory

Related Special Issue

Published Papers (21 papers)

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Research

Jump to: Review

Open AccessArticle Isolation and Analysis of the Cppsy Gene and Promoter from Chlorella protothecoides CS-41
Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(11), 6620-6635; doi:10.3390/md13116620
Received: 25 June 2015 / Revised: 9 September 2015 / Accepted: 9 September 2015 / Published: 28 October 2015
PDF Full-text (1117 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Phytoene synthase (PSY) catalyzes the condensation of two molecules of geranylgeranyl pyrophosphate to form phytoene, the first colorless carotene in the carotenoid biosynthesis pathway. So it is regarded as the crucial enzyme for carotenoid production, and has unsurprisingly been involved in genetic [...] Read more.
Phytoene synthase (PSY) catalyzes the condensation of two molecules of geranylgeranyl pyrophosphate to form phytoene, the first colorless carotene in the carotenoid biosynthesis pathway. So it is regarded as the crucial enzyme for carotenoid production, and has unsurprisingly been involved in genetic engineering studies of carotenoid production. In this study, the psy gene from Chlorella protothecoides CS-41, designated Cppsy, was cloned using rapid amplification of cDNA ends. The full-length DNA was 2488 bp, and the corresponding cDNA was 1143 bp, which encoded 380 amino acids. Computational analysis suggested that this protein belongs to the Isoprenoid_Biosyn_C1 superfamily. It contained the consensus sequence, including three predicted substrate-Mg2+ binding sites. The Cppsy gene promoter was also cloned and characterized. Analysis revealed several candidate motifs for the promoter, which exhibited light- and methyl jasmonate (MeJA)-responsive characteristics, as well as some typical domains universally discovered in promoter sequences, such as the TATA-box and CAAT-box. Light- and MeJA treatment showed that the Cppsy expression level was significantly enhanced by light and MeJA. These results provide a basis for genetically modifying the carotenoid biosynthesis pathway in C. protothecoides. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
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Open AccessArticle Accumulation of Astaxanthin by a New Haematococcus pluvialis Strain BM1 from the White Sea Coastal Rocks (Russia)
Mar. Drugs 2014, 12(8), 4504-4520; doi:10.3390/md12084504
Received: 12 June 2014 / Revised: 17 July 2014 / Accepted: 4 August 2014 / Published: 15 August 2014
Cited by 11 | PDF Full-text (1820 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
We report on a novel arctic strain BM1 of a carotenogenic chlorophyte from a coastal habitat with harsh environmental conditions (wide variations in solar irradiance, temperature, salinity and nutrient availability) identified as Haematococcus pluvialis Flotow. Increased (25‰) salinity exerted no adverse effect [...] Read more.
We report on a novel arctic strain BM1 of a carotenogenic chlorophyte from a coastal habitat with harsh environmental conditions (wide variations in solar irradiance, temperature, salinity and nutrient availability) identified as Haematococcus pluvialis Flotow. Increased (25‰) salinity exerted no adverse effect on the growth of the green BM1 cells. Under stressful conditions (high light, nitrogen and phosphorus deprivation), green vegetative cells of H. pluvialis BM1 grown in BG11 medium formed non-motile palmelloid cells and, eventually, hematocysts capable of a massive accumulation of the keto-carotenoid astaxanthin with a high nutraceutical and therapeutic potential. Routinely, astaxanthin was accumulated at the level of 4% of the cell dry weight (DW), reaching, under prolonged stress, 5.5% DW. Astaxanthin was predominantly accumulated in the form of mono- and diesters of fatty acids from C16 and C18 families. The palmelloids and hematocysts were characterized by the formation of red-colored cytoplasmic lipid droplets, increasingly large in size and number. The lipid droplets tended to merge and occupied almost the entire volume of the cell at the advanced stages of stress-induced carotenogenesis. The potential application of the new strain for the production of astaxanthin is discussed in comparison with the H. pluvialis strains currently employed in microalgal biotechnology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
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Open AccessArticle Fucoxanthin Enhances the Level of Reduced Glutathione via the Nrf2-Mediated Pathway in Human Keratinocytes
Mar. Drugs 2014, 12(7), 4214-4230; doi:10.3390/md12074214
Received: 4 June 2014 / Revised: 1 July 2014 / Accepted: 4 July 2014 / Published: 15 July 2014
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (1463 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Fucoxanthin, a natural carotenoid, is abundant in seaweed with antioxidant properties. This study investigated the role of fucoxanthin in the induction of antioxidant enzymes involved in the synthesis of reduced glutathione (GSH), synthesized by glutamate-cysteine ligase catalytic subunit (GCLC) and glutathione synthetase [...] Read more.
Fucoxanthin, a natural carotenoid, is abundant in seaweed with antioxidant properties. This study investigated the role of fucoxanthin in the induction of antioxidant enzymes involved in the synthesis of reduced glutathione (GSH), synthesized by glutamate-cysteine ligase catalytic subunit (GCLC) and glutathione synthetase (GSS), via Akt/nuclear factor-erythroid 2-related (Nrf2) pathway in human keratinocytes (HaCaT) and elucidated the underlying mechanism. Fucoxanthin treatment increased the mRNA and protein levels of GCLC and GSS in HaCaT cells. In addition, fucoxanthin treatment promoted the nuclear translocation and phosphorylation of Nrf2, a transcription factor for the genes encoding GCLC and GSS. Chromatin immune-precipitation and luciferase reporter gene assays revealed that fucoxanthin treatment increased the binding of Nrf2 to the antioxidant response element (ARE) sequence and transcriptional activity of Nrf2. Fucoxanthin treatment increased phosphorylation of Akt (active form), an up-regulator of Nrf2 and exposure to LY294002, a phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K)/Akt inhibitor, suppressed the fucoxanthin-induced activation of Akt, Nrf2, resulting in decreased GCLC and GSS expression. In accordance with the effects on GCLC and GSS expression, fucoxanthin induced the level of GSH. In addition, fucoxanthin treatment recovered the level of GSH reduced by ultraviolet B irradiation. Taken together, these findings suggest that fucoxanthin treatment augments cellular antioxidant defense by inducing Nrf2-driven expression of enzymes involved in GSH synthesis via PI3K/Akt signaling. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
Open AccessArticle Synthesis of (3S,3′S)- and meso-Stereoisomers of Alloxanthin and Determination of Absolute Configuration of Alloxanthin Isolated from Aquatic Animals
Mar. Drugs 2014, 12(5), 2623-2632; doi:10.3390/md12052623
Received: 20 March 2014 / Revised: 15 April 2014 / Accepted: 15 April 2014 / Published: 8 May 2014
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (716 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In order to determine the absolute configuration of naturally occurring alloxanthin, a HPLC analytical method for three stereoisomers 1ac was established by using a chiral column. Two authentic samples, (3S,3′S)- and meso-stereoisomers 1b and 1c [...] Read more.
In order to determine the absolute configuration of naturally occurring alloxanthin, a HPLC analytical method for three stereoisomers 1ac was established by using a chiral column. Two authentic samples, (3S,3′S)- and meso-stereoisomers 1b and 1c, were chemically synthesized according to the method previously developed for (3R,3′R)-alloxanthin (1a). Application of this method to various alloxanthin specimens of aquatic animals demonstrated that those isolated from shellfishes, tunicates, and crucian carp are identical with (3R,3′R)-stereoisomer 1a, and unexpectedly those from lake shrimp, catfish, biwa goby, and biwa trout are mixtures of three stereoisomers of 1ac. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
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Open AccessArticle Peridinin from the Marine Symbiotic Dinoflagellate, Symbiodinium sp., Regulates Eosinophilia in Mice
Mar. Drugs 2014, 12(4), 1773-1787; doi:10.3390/md12041773
Received: 10 December 2013 / Revised: 25 February 2014 / Accepted: 28 February 2014 / Published: 27 March 2014
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Abstract
Peridinin and fucoxanthin, which are natural carotenoids isolated from a symbiotic dinoflagellate, Symbiodinium sp., and a brown alga, Petalonia fascia, respectively, were compared for inhibitory effects on delayed-type hypersensitivity in mice. The number of eosinophils at the site of inflammation and [...] Read more.
Peridinin and fucoxanthin, which are natural carotenoids isolated from a symbiotic dinoflagellate, Symbiodinium sp., and a brown alga, Petalonia fascia, respectively, were compared for inhibitory effects on delayed-type hypersensitivity in mice. The number of eosinophils at the site of inflammation and in peripheral blood was compared for the administration of peridinin and fucoxanthin applied by painting and intraperitoneally. Peridinin, but not the structurally-related fucoxanthin, significantly suppressed the number of eosinophils in both the ear lobe and peripheral blood. Furthermore, peridinin applied topically, but not administered intraperitoneally, suppressed the level of eotaxin in the ears of sensitized mice. Fucoxanthin weakly suppressed the concentration of eotaxin in ears only by intraperitoneal administration. Although both carotenoids inhibited the migration of eosinophils toward eotaxin, the inhibitory effect of peridinin was higher than that of fucoxanthin. Peridinin may be a potential agent for suppressing allergic inflammatory responses, such as atopic dermatitis, in which eosinophils play a major role in the increase of inflammation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
Open AccessArticle Carotenoids of Sea Angels Clione limacina and Paedoclione doliiformis from the Perspective of the Food Chain
Mar. Drugs 2014, 12(3), 1460-1470; doi:10.3390/md12031460
Received: 16 January 2014 / Revised: 19 February 2014 / Accepted: 3 March 2014 / Published: 13 March 2014
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (764 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Sea angels, Clione limacina and Paedoclione doliiformis, are small, floating sea slugs belonging to Gastropoda, and their gonads are a bright orange-red color. Sea angels feed exclusively on a small herbivorous sea snail, Limacina helicina. Carotenoids in C. limacina, [...] Read more.
Sea angels, Clione limacina and Paedoclione doliiformis, are small, floating sea slugs belonging to Gastropoda, and their gonads are a bright orange-red color. Sea angels feed exclusively on a small herbivorous sea snail, Limacina helicina. Carotenoids in C. limacina, P. doliiformis, and L. helicina were investigated for comparative biochemical points of view. β-Carotene, zeaxanthin, and diatoxanthin were found to be major carotenoids in L. helicina. L. helicina accumulated dietary algal carotenoids without modification. On the other hand, keto-carotenoids, such as pectenolone, 7,8-didehydroastaxanthin, and adonixanthin were identified as major carotenoids in the sea angels C. limacina and P. doliiformis. Sea angels oxidatively metabolize dietary carotenoids and accumulate them in their gonads. Carotenoids in the gonads of sea angels might protect against oxidative stress and enhance reproduction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
Open AccessArticle Dietary Fucoxanthin Increases Metabolic Rate and Upregulated mRNA Expressions of the PGC-1alpha Network, Mitochondrial Biogenesis and Fusion Genes in White Adipose Tissues of Mice
Mar. Drugs 2014, 12(2), 964-982; doi:10.3390/md12020964
Received: 17 December 2013 / Revised: 22 January 2014 / Accepted: 23 January 2014 / Published: 14 February 2014
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (1460 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
The mechanism for how fucoxanthin (FX) suppressed adipose accumulation is unclear. We aim to investigate the effects of FX on metabolic rate and expressions of genes related to thermogenesis, mitochondria biogenesis and homeostasis. Using a 2 × 2 factorial design, four groups [...] Read more.
The mechanism for how fucoxanthin (FX) suppressed adipose accumulation is unclear. We aim to investigate the effects of FX on metabolic rate and expressions of genes related to thermogenesis, mitochondria biogenesis and homeostasis. Using a 2 × 2 factorial design, four groups of mice were respectively fed a high sucrose (50% sucrose) or a high-fat diet (23% butter + 7% soybean oil) supplemented with or without 0.2% FX. FX significantly increased oxygen consumption and carbon dioxide production and reduced white adipose tissue (WAT) mass. The mRNA expressions of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) γ coactivator-1α (PGC-1α), cell death-inducing DFFA-like effecter a (CIDEA), PPARα, PPARγ, estrogen-related receptor α (ERRα), β3-adrenergic receptor (β3-AR) and deiodinase 2 (Dio2) were significantly upregulated in inguinal WAT (iWAT) and epididymal WAT (eWAT) by FX. Mitochondrial biogenic genes, nuclear respiratory factor 1 (NRF1) and NRF2, were increased in eWAT by FX. Noticeably, FX upregulated genes of mitochondrial fusion, mitofusin 1 (Mfn1), Mfn2 and optic atrophy 1 (OPA1), but not mitochondrial fission, Fission 1, in both iWAT and eWAT. In conclusion, dietary FX enhanced the metabolic rate and lowered adipose mass irrespective of the diet. These were associated with upregulated genes of the PGC-1α network and mitochondrial fusion in eWAT and iWAT. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
Open AccessArticle Carotenoids in Marine Invertebrates Living along the Kuroshio Current Coast
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(8), 1419-1427; doi:10.3390/md9081419
Received: 30 June 2011 / Revised: 31 July 2011 / Accepted: 8 August 2011 / Published: 22 August 2011
Cited by 8 | PDF Full-text (232 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Carotenoids of the corals Acropora japonica, A. secale, and A. hyacinthus, the tridacnid clam Tridacna squamosa, the crown-of-thorns starfish Acanthaster planci, and the small sea snail Drupella fragum were investigated. The corals and the tridacnid clam are [...] Read more.
Carotenoids of the corals Acropora japonica, A. secale, and A. hyacinthus, the tridacnid clam Tridacna squamosa, the crown-of-thorns starfish Acanthaster planci, and the small sea snail Drupella fragum were investigated. The corals and the tridacnid clam are filter feeders and are associated with symbiotic zooxanthellae. Peridinin and pyrrhoxanthin, which originated from symbiotic zooxanthellae, were found to be major carotenoids in corals and the tridacnid clam. The crown-of-thorns starfish and the sea snail D. fragum are carnivorous and mainly feed on corals. Peridinin-3-acyl esters were major carotenoids in the sea snail D. fragum. On the other hand, ketocarotenoids such as 7,8-didehydroastaxanthin and astaxanthin were major carotenoids in the crown-of-thorns starfish. Carotenoids found in these marine animals closely reflected not only their metabolism but also their food chains. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
Open AccessArticle The New Carotenoid Pigment Moraxanthin Is Associated with Toxic Microalgae
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(2), 242-255; doi:10.3390/md9020242
Received: 22 December 2010 / Revised: 25 January 2011 / Accepted: 4 February 2011 / Published: 10 February 2011
Cited by 9 | PDF Full-text (493 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
The new pigment “moraxanthin” was found in natural samples from a fish mortality site in the Inland Bays of Delaware, USA. Pure cultures of the species, tentatively named Chattonella cf. verruculosa, and natural samples contained this pigment as a dominant carotenoid. [...] Read more.
The new pigment “moraxanthin” was found in natural samples from a fish mortality site in the Inland Bays of Delaware, USA. Pure cultures of the species, tentatively named Chattonella cf. verruculosa, and natural samples contained this pigment as a dominant carotenoid. The pigment, obtained from a 10 L culture of C. cf. verruculosa, was isolated and harvested by HPLC and its structure determined from MS and 1D- and 2D-NMR. The data identified this pigment as a new acylated form of vaucheriaxanthin called moraxanthin after the berry like algal cell. Its presence in pure cultures and in natural bloom samples indicates that moraxanthin is specific to C. cf. verruculosa and can be used as a marker of its presence when HPLC is used to analyze natural blooms samples. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
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Open AccessArticle Enhanced Productivity of a Lutein-Enriched Novel Acidophile Microalga Grown on Urea
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(1), 29-42; doi:10.3390/md9010029
Received: 2 November 2010 / Revised: 18 December 2010 / Accepted: 23 December 2010 / Published: 24 December 2010
Cited by 15 | PDF Full-text (579 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Coccomyxa acidophila is an extremophile eukaryotic microalga isolated from the Tinto River mining area in Huelva, Spain. Coccomyxa acidophila accumulates relevant amounts of b-carotene and lutein, well-known carotenoids with many biotechnological applications, especially in food and health-related industries. The acidic culture medium (pH < 2.5) that prevents outdoor cultivation from non-desired microorganism growth is one of the main advantages of acidophile microalgae production. Conversely, acidophile microalgae growth rates are usually very low compared to common microalgae growth rates. In this work, we show that mixotrophic cultivation on urea efficiently enhances growth and productivity of an acidophile microalga up to typical values for common microalgae, therefore approaching acidophile algal production towards suitable conditions for feasible outdoor production. Algal productivity and potential for carotenoid accumulation were analyzed as a function of the nitrogen source supplied. Several nitrogen conditions were assayed: nitrogen starvation, nitrate and/or nitrite, ammonia and urea. Among them, urea clearly led to the best cell growth (~4 ´ 108 cells/mL at the end of log phase). Ammonium led to the maximum chlorophyll and carotenoid content per volume unit (220 mg·mL-1 and 35 mg·mL-1, respectively). Interestingly, no significant differences in growth rates were found in cultures grown on urea as C and N source, with respect to those cultures grown on nitrate and CO2 as nitrogen and carbon sources (control cultures). Lutein accumulated up to 3.55 mg·g-1 in the mixotrophic cultures grown on urea. In addition, algal growth in a shaded culture revealed the first evidence for an active xanthophylls cycle operative in acidophile microalgae. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
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Review

Jump to: Research

Open AccessReview Synthetic Biology and Metabolic Engineering for Marine Carotenoids: New Opportunities and Future Prospects
Mar. Drugs 2014, 12(9), 4810-4832; doi:10.3390/md12094810
Received: 14 June 2014 / Revised: 29 August 2014 / Accepted: 1 September 2014 / Published: 17 September 2014
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (1851 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Carotenoids are a class of diverse pigments with important biological roles such as light capture and antioxidative activities. Many novel carotenoids have been isolated from marine organisms to date and have shown various utilizations as nutraceuticals and pharmaceuticals. In this review, we [...] Read more.
Carotenoids are a class of diverse pigments with important biological roles such as light capture and antioxidative activities. Many novel carotenoids have been isolated from marine organisms to date and have shown various utilizations as nutraceuticals and pharmaceuticals. In this review, we summarize the pathways and enzymes of carotenoid synthesis and discuss various modifications of marine carotenoids. The advances in metabolic engineering and synthetic biology for carotenoid production are also reviewed, in hopes that this review will promote the exploration of marine carotenoid for their utilizations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
Open AccessReview Siphonaxanthin, a Green Algal Carotenoid, as a Novel Functional Compound
Mar. Drugs 2014, 12(6), 3660-3668; doi:10.3390/md12063660
Received: 10 March 2014 / Revised: 14 April 2014 / Accepted: 17 April 2014 / Published: 19 June 2014
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (168 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Siphonaxanthin is a specific keto-carotenoid in green algae whose bio-functional properties are yet to be identified. This review focuses on siphonaxanthin as a bioactive compound and outlines the evidence associated with functionality. Siphonaxanthin has been reported to potently inhibit the viability of [...] Read more.
Siphonaxanthin is a specific keto-carotenoid in green algae whose bio-functional properties are yet to be identified. This review focuses on siphonaxanthin as a bioactive compound and outlines the evidence associated with functionality. Siphonaxanthin has been reported to potently inhibit the viability of human leukemia HL-60 cells via induction of apoptosis. In comparison with fucoxanthin, siphonaxanthin markedly reduced cell viability as early as 6 h after treatment. The cellular uptake of siphonaxanthin was 2-fold higher than fucoxanthin. It has been proposed that siphonaxanthin possesses significant anti-angiogenic activity in studies using human umbilical vein endothelial cells and rat aortic ring. The results of these studies suggested that the anti-angiogenic effect of siphonaxanthin is due to the down-regulation of signal transduction by fibroblast growth factor receptor-1 in vascular endothelial cells. Siphonaxanthin also exhibited inhibitory effects on antigen-induced degranulation of mast cells. These findings open up new avenues for future research on siphonaxanthin as a bioactive compound, and additional investigation, especially in vivo studies, are required to validate these findings. In addition, further studies are needed to determine its bioavailability and metabolic fate. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
Open AccessReview New and Rare Carotenoids Isolated from Marine Bacteria and Their Antioxidant Activities
Mar. Drugs 2014, 12(3), 1690-1698; doi:10.3390/md12031690
Received: 10 February 2014 / Revised: 3 March 2014 / Accepted: 4 March 2014 / Published: 24 March 2014
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (508 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Marine bacteria have not been examined as extensively as land bacteria. We screened carotenoids from orange or red pigments-producing marine bacteria belonging to rare or novel species. The new acyclic carotenoids with a C30 aglycone, diapolycopenedioc acid xylosylesters A–C and methyl [...] Read more.
Marine bacteria have not been examined as extensively as land bacteria. We screened carotenoids from orange or red pigments-producing marine bacteria belonging to rare or novel species. The new acyclic carotenoids with a C30 aglycone, diapolycopenedioc acid xylosylesters A–C and methyl 5-glucosyl-5,6-dihydro-apo-4,4′-lycopenoate, were isolated from the novel Gram-negative bacterium Rubritalea squalenifaciens, which belongs to phylum Verrucomicrobia, as well as the low-GC Gram-positive bacterium Planococcus maritimus strain iso-3 belonging to the class Bacilli, phylum Firmicutes, respectively. The rare monocyclic C40 carotenoids, (3R)-saproxanthin and (3R,2′S)-myxol, were isolated from novel species of Gram-negative bacteria belonging to the family Flavobacteriaceae, phylum Bacteroidetes. In this review, we report the structures and antioxidant activities of these carotenoids, and consider relationships between bacterial phyla and carotenoid structures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
Open AccessReview Marine Carotenoids and Cardiovascular Risk Markers
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(7), 1166-1175; doi:10.3390/md9071166
Received: 17 February 2011 / Revised: 26 May 2011 / Accepted: 15 June 2011 / Published: 27 June 2011
Cited by 29 | PDF Full-text (158 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Marine carotenoids are important bioactive compounds with physiological activities related to prevention of degenerative diseases.found principally in plants, with potential antioxidant biological properties deriving from their chemical structure and interaction with biological membranes. They are substances with very special and remarkable properties [...] Read more.
Marine carotenoids are important bioactive compounds with physiological activities related to prevention of degenerative diseases.found principally in plants, with potential antioxidant biological properties deriving from their chemical structure and interaction with biological membranes. They are substances with very special and remarkable properties that no other groups of substances possess and that form the basis of their many, varied functions and actions in all kinds of living organisms. The potential beneficial effects of marine carotenoids have been studied particularly in astaxanthin and fucoxanthin as they are the major marine carotenoids. Both these two carotenoids show strong antioxidant activity attributed to quenching singlet oxygen and scavenging free radicals. The potential role of these carotenoids as dietary anti-oxidants has been suggested to be one of the main mechanisms for their preventive effects against cancer and inflammatory diseases. The aim of this short review is to examine the published studies concerning the use of the two marine carotenoids, astaxanthin and fucoxanthin, in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
Open AccessReview Carotenoids in Algae: Distributions, Biosyntheses and Functions
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(6), 1101-1118; doi:10.3390/md9061101
Received: 2 May 2011 / Revised: 31 May 2011 / Accepted: 8 June 2011 / Published: 15 June 2011
Cited by 106 | PDF Full-text (764 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
For photosynthesis, phototrophic organisms necessarily synthesize not only chlorophylls but also carotenoids. Many kinds of carotenoids are found in algae and, recently, taxonomic studies of algae have been developed. In this review, the relationship between the distribution of carotenoids and the phylogeny [...] Read more.
For photosynthesis, phototrophic organisms necessarily synthesize not only chlorophylls but also carotenoids. Many kinds of carotenoids are found in algae and, recently, taxonomic studies of algae have been developed. In this review, the relationship between the distribution of carotenoids and the phylogeny of oxygenic phototrophs in sea and fresh water, including cyanobacteria, red algae, brown algae and green algae, is summarized. These phototrophs contain division- or class-specific carotenoids, such as fucoxanthin, peridinin and siphonaxanthin. The distribution of α-carotene and its derivatives, such as lutein, loroxanthin and siphonaxanthin, are limited to divisions of Rhodophyta (macrophytic type), Cryptophyta, Euglenophyta, Chlorarachniophyta and Chlorophyta. In addition, carotenogenesis pathways are discussed based on the chemical structures of carotenoids and known characteristics of carotenogenesis enzymes in other organisms; genes and enzymes for carotenogenesis in algae are not yet known. Most carotenoids bind to membrane-bound pigment-protein complexes, such as reaction center, light-harvesting and cytochrome b6f complexes. Water-soluble peridinin-chlorophyll a-protein (PCP) and orange carotenoid protein (OCP) are also established. Some functions of carotenoids in photosynthesis are also briefly summarized. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
Open AccessReview Absorption and Metabolism of Xanthophylls
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(6), 1024-1037; doi:10.3390/md9061024
Received: 1 April 2011 / Revised: 3 June 2011 / Accepted: 7 June 2011 / Published: 10 June 2011
Cited by 26 | PDF Full-text (386 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Dietary carotenoids, especially xanthophylls, have attracted significant attention because of their characteristic biological activities, including anti-allergic, anti-cancer, and anti-obese actions. Although no less than forty carotenoids are ingested under usual dietary habits, only six carotenoids and their metabolites have been found in [...] Read more.
Dietary carotenoids, especially xanthophylls, have attracted significant attention because of their characteristic biological activities, including anti-allergic, anti-cancer, and anti-obese actions. Although no less than forty carotenoids are ingested under usual dietary habits, only six carotenoids and their metabolites have been found in human tissues, suggesting selectivity in the intestinal absorption of carotenoids. Recently, facilitated diffusion in addition to simple diffusion has been reported to mediate the intestinal absorption of carotenoids in mammals. The selective absorption of carotenoids may be caused by uptake to the intestinal epithelia by the facilitated diffusion and an unknown excretion to intestinal lumen. It is well known that β-carotene can be metabolized to vitamin A after intestinal absorption of carotenoids, but little is known about the metabolic transformation of non provitamin A xanthophylls. The enzymatic oxidation of the secondary hydroxyl group leading to keto-carotenoids would occur as a common pathway of xanthophyll metabolism in mammals. This paper reviews the absorption and metabolism of xanthophylls by introducing recent advances in this field. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
Open AccessReview Carotenoid β-Ring Hydroxylase and Ketolase from Marine Bacteria—Promiscuous Enzymes for Synthesizing Functional Xanthophylls
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(5), 757-771; doi:10.3390/md9050757
Received: 21 March 2011 / Revised: 19 April 2011 / Accepted: 26 April 2011 / Published: 6 May 2011
Cited by 11 | PDF Full-text (671 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Marine bacteria belonging to genera Paracoccus and Brevundimonas of the α-Proteobacteria class can produce C40-type dicyclic carotenoids containing two β-end groups (β rings) that are modified with keto and hydroxyl groups. These bacteria produce astaxanthin, adonixanthin, and their derivatives, [...] Read more.
Marine bacteria belonging to genera Paracoccus and Brevundimonas of the α-Proteobacteria class can produce C40-type dicyclic carotenoids containing two β-end groups (β rings) that are modified with keto and hydroxyl groups. These bacteria produce astaxanthin, adonixanthin, and their derivatives, which are ketolated by carotenoid β-ring 4(4′)-ketolase (4(4′)-oxygenase; CrtW) and hydroxylated by carotenoid β-ring 3(3′)-hydroxylase (CrtZ). In addition, the genus Brevundimonas possesses a gene for carotenoid β-ring 2(2′)-hydroxylase (CrtG). This review focuses on these carotenoid β-ring-modifying enzymes that are promiscuous for carotenoid substrates, and pathway engineering for the production of xanthophylls (oxygen-containing carotenoids) in Escherichia coli, using these enzyme genes. Such pathway engineering researches are performed towards efficient production not only of commercially important xanthophylls such as astaxanthin, but also of xanthophylls minor in nature (e.g., β-ring(s)-2(2′)-hydroxylated carotenoids). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
Open AccessReview Microalgae as Sources of Carotenoids
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(4), 625-644; doi:10.3390/md9040625
Received: 14 March 2011 / Accepted: 14 April 2011 / Published: 20 April 2011
Cited by 84 | PDF Full-text (299 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Marine microalgae constitute a natural source of a variety of drugs for pharmaceutical, food and cosmetic applications—which encompass carotenoids, among others. A growing body of experimental evidence has confirmed that these compounds can play important roles in prevention (and even treatment) of [...] Read more.
Marine microalgae constitute a natural source of a variety of drugs for pharmaceutical, food and cosmetic applications—which encompass carotenoids, among others. A growing body of experimental evidence has confirmed that these compounds can play important roles in prevention (and even treatment) of human diseases and health conditions, e.g., cancer, cardiovascular problems, atherosclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, muscular dystrophy, cataracts and some neurological disorders. The underlying features that may account for such favorable biological activities are their intrinsic antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and antitumoral features. In this invited review, the most important issues regarding synthesis of carotenoids by microalgae are described and discussed—from both physiological and processing points of view. Current gaps of knowledge, as well as technological opportunities in the near future relating to this growing field of interest, are also put forward in a critical manner. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
Open AccessReview Astaxanthin: A Potential Therapeutic Agent in Cardiovascular Disease
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(3), 447-465; doi:10.3390/md9030447
Received: 7 February 2011 / Revised: 14 March 2011 / Accepted: 18 March 2011 / Published: 21 March 2011
Cited by 63 | PDF Full-text (225 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Astaxanthin is a xanthophyll carotenoid present in microalgae, fungi, complex plants, seafood, flamingos and quail. It is an antioxidant with anti-inflammatory properties and as such has potential as a therapeutic agent in atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. Synthetic forms of astaxanthin have been manufactured. [...] Read more.
Astaxanthin is a xanthophyll carotenoid present in microalgae, fungi, complex plants, seafood, flamingos and quail. It is an antioxidant with anti-inflammatory properties and as such has potential as a therapeutic agent in atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. Synthetic forms of astaxanthin have been manufactured. The safety, bioavailability and effects of astaxanthin on oxidative stress and inflammation that have relevance to the pathophysiology of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, have been assessed in a small number of clinical studies. No adverse events have been reported and there is evidence of a reduction in biomarkers of oxidative stress and inflammation with astaxanthin administration. Experimental studies in several species using an ischaemia-reperfusion myocardial model demonstrated that astaxanthin protects the myocardium when administered both orally or intravenously prior to the induction of the ischaemic event. At this stage we do not know whether astaxanthin is of benefit when administered after a cardiovascular event and no clinical cardiovascular studies in humans have been completed and/or reported. Cardiovascular clinical trials are warranted based on the physicochemical and antioxidant properties, the safety profile and preliminary experimental cardiovascular studies of astaxanthin. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
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Open AccessReview Marine Carotenoids: Biological Functions and Commercial Applications
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(3), 319-333; doi:10.3390/md9030319
Received: 31 January 2011 / Revised: 15 February 2011 / Accepted: 17 February 2011 / Published: 3 March 2011
Cited by 53 | PDF Full-text (241 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Carotenoids are the most common pigments in nature and are synthesized by all photosynthetic organisms and fungi. Carotenoids are considered key molecules for life. Light capture, photosynthesis photoprotection, excess light dissipation and quenching of singlet oxygen are among key biological functions of [...] Read more.
Carotenoids are the most common pigments in nature and are synthesized by all photosynthetic organisms and fungi. Carotenoids are considered key molecules for life. Light capture, photosynthesis photoprotection, excess light dissipation and quenching of singlet oxygen are among key biological functions of carotenoids relevant for life on earth. Biological properties of carotenoids allow for a wide range of commercial applications. Indeed, recent interest in the carotenoids has been mainly for their nutraceutical properties. A large number of scientific studies have confirmed the benefits of carotenoids to health and their use for this purpose is growing rapidly. In addition, carotenoids have traditionally been used in food and animal feed for their color properties. Carotenoids are also known to improve consumer perception of quality; an example is the addition of carotenoids to fish feed to impart color to farmed salmon. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))
Open AccessReview Carotenoids in Marine Animals
Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(2), 278-293; doi:10.3390/md9020278
Received: 14 January 2011 / Revised: 16 February 2011 / Accepted: 21 February 2011 / Published: 22 February 2011
Cited by 51 | PDF Full-text (271 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Marine animals contain various carotenoids that show structural diversity. These marine animals accumulate carotenoids from foods such as algae and other animals and modify them through metabolic reactions. Many of the carotenoids present in marine animals are metabolites of β-carotene, fucoxanthin, peridinin, [...] Read more.
Marine animals contain various carotenoids that show structural diversity. These marine animals accumulate carotenoids from foods such as algae and other animals and modify them through metabolic reactions. Many of the carotenoids present in marine animals are metabolites of β-carotene, fucoxanthin, peridinin, diatoxanthin, alloxanthin, and astaxanthin, etc. Carotenoids found in these animals provide the food chain as well as metabolic pathways. In the present review, I will describe marine animal carotenoids from natural product chemistry, metabolism, food chain, and chemosystematic viewpoints, and also describe new structural carotenoids isolated from marine animals over the last decade. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Carotenoids (Special Issue))

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