Navigation Links
Bacteria from sponges make new pharmaceuticals
Date:9/3/2007

Thousands of interesting new compounds have been discovered inside the bodies of marine sponges according to scientists speaking today (Tuesday 4 September 2007) at the Society for General Microbiologys 161st Meeting at the University of Edinburgh, UK, which runs from 3-6 September 2007.

Over half of the bodyweight of living sea sponges including the sort that we use in our baths is made up of the many different bacteria that live inside them, in the same way that we all have bacteria living in our guts which help us to digest our food.

Marine sponges are the most prolific and important source of new active compounds discovered in the last twenty or thirty years in our seas. We thought it likely that many of the interesting new compounds we were discovering inside sea sponges were actually being made by the bacteria inside their bodies, not the sponges themselves, says Dr Detmer Sipkema of University College Berkeley, in California, USA.

Unfortunately the scientists discovered that it is very difficult to grow these bacteria in the laboratory, as the environment inside a sponge is significantly different from conditions in the surrounding seawater. Currently, only between one in a hundred and one in a thousand types of bacteria can be cultured artificially.

We are trying to culture the other 99% by simulating the microenvironment in the sponge where the bacteria live, says Dr Sipkema. The next step will be to identify which bacteria are responsible for the production of the most medically interesting compounds and try to culture these on a larger scale. Most attempts to properly test these important bioactive compounds in hospital patients have failed because doctors simply cannot get enough of the products to prove that the clinical trials are effective or safe.

So far, by trying a lot of different cultivation methods, the scientists have been successful in culturing about 10% of the different sorts of bacteria that live in the sponges.

As well as their attempt to produce useful pharmaceutical compounds on a commercial scale, the researchers believe that successfully culturing these little known bacteria will give new insights into evolution.

Marine sponges were the first multicellular organisms to evolve on earth that are still alive. This implies that the relationship between the sponge and its bacterial inhabitants may also be very old, says Dr Detmer Sipkema. Therefore sponges are interesting to study the evolution of symbiosis, teaching us about the way different organisms have developed their mutual relationships.


'/>"/>
Contact: Lucy Goodchild
l.goodchild@sgm.ac.uk
44-011-898-81843
Society for General Microbiology
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Anti-bacterial additive widespread in U.S. waterways
2. Bacteria collection sheds light on urinary tract infections
3. A bacterial genome reveals new targets to combat infectious disease
4. Solution to Pollution: New Bacteria Eats Toxic Waste
5. Discovery of key proteins shape could lead to improved bacterial pneumonia vaccine
6. The Bacterias guide to survival
7. Scientists discover that host cell lipids facilitate bacterial movement
8. UF Researchers Map Bacterial Proteins That Cause Tooth Loss
9. Family trees of ancient bacteria reveal evolutionary moves
10. Drug-resistant bacteria on poultry products differ by brand
11. Programmable cells: Engineer turns bacteria into living computers
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:7/20/2017)... 2017 Delta (NYSE: DAL ) customers now can ... at Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA). ... Delta launches biometrics to board aircraft at Reagan ... Delta,s biometric boarding pass experience that ... now integrated into the boarding process to allow eligible Delta SkyMiles Members ...
(Date:5/23/2017)... Italy , May 23, 2017  Hunova, the first robotic gym ... trunk, has been officially launched in Genoa, Italy . ... Europe and the USA . The technology ... on the market by the IIT spin-off Movendo Technology thanks to a ... the Multimedia News Release, please click: ...
(Date:4/24/2017)... , April 24, 2017 Janice ... partner with  Identity Strategy Partners, LLP (IdSP) , ... or without President Trump,s March 6, 2017 ... Entry , refugee vetting can be instilled with greater ... (Right now, all refugee applications are suspended by ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/10/2017)... Philadelphia, PA (PRWEB) , ... October 10, 2017 ... ... University City Science Center’s FirstHand program has won a US2020 STEM Mentoring Award. ... accept the award for Excellence in Volunteer Experience from US2020. , US2020’s mission ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... October 10, 2017 , ... ... process optimization firm for the life sciences and healthcare industries, announces a presentation ... San Francisco. , The presentation, “Automating GxP Validation for Agile Cloud Platforms,” will ...
(Date:10/9/2017)... ... 2017 , ... At its national board meeting in North Carolina, ARCS® ... Departments of Physics and Astronomy, has been selected for membership in ARCS Alumni ... the 2015 Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental physics for the discovery of the accelerating expansion ...
(Date:10/7/2017)... ... October 06, 2017 , ... ... ProxiMeta™ Hi-C metagenome deconvolution product, featuring the first commercially available Hi-C kit. ... to perform Hi-C metagenome deconvolution using their own facilities, supplementing the company’s ...
Breaking Biology Technology: