Ovothiols are histidine-derived thiols produced by a variety of marine invertebrates, protists and bacteria. These compounds, which are among the strongest natural antioxidants, are involved in controlling the cellular redox balance due to their redox exchange with glutathione. Although ovothiols were initially reported as protective agents against environmental stressors, new evidence suggests that they can also act as pheromones and participate in fundamental biological processes such as embryogenesis. To get further insight into the biological roles of ovothiols, we compared ovothiol biosynthesis in the sea urchin Paracentrotus lividus and in the mussel Mytilus galloprovincialis, the two species that represent the richest sources of these compounds among marine invertebrates. Ovothiol content was measured in different tissues and in the immune cells from both species and the expression levels of ovoA, the gene responsible for ovothiol biosynthesis, was inferred from publicly available transcriptomes. A comparative analysis of ovothiol biosynthesis in the two species allowed the identification of the tissues and cells synthesizing the metabolite and highlighted analogies and differences between sea urchins and mussels. By improving our knowledge on the biological roles of ovothiols and pointing out the existence of sustainable natural sources for their isolation, this study provides the basis for future biotechnological investigations on these valuable compounds.

A Survey on the Distribution of Ovothiol and ovoA Gene Expression in Different Tissues and Cells: A Comparative Analysis in Sea Urchins and Mussels

Sollitto, Marco;Gerdol, Marco;
2022-01-01

Abstract

Ovothiols are histidine-derived thiols produced by a variety of marine invertebrates, protists and bacteria. These compounds, which are among the strongest natural antioxidants, are involved in controlling the cellular redox balance due to their redox exchange with glutathione. Although ovothiols were initially reported as protective agents against environmental stressors, new evidence suggests that they can also act as pheromones and participate in fundamental biological processes such as embryogenesis. To get further insight into the biological roles of ovothiols, we compared ovothiol biosynthesis in the sea urchin Paracentrotus lividus and in the mussel Mytilus galloprovincialis, the two species that represent the richest sources of these compounds among marine invertebrates. Ovothiol content was measured in different tissues and in the immune cells from both species and the expression levels of ovoA, the gene responsible for ovothiol biosynthesis, was inferred from publicly available transcriptomes. A comparative analysis of ovothiol biosynthesis in the two species allowed the identification of the tissues and cells synthesizing the metabolite and highlighted analogies and differences between sea urchins and mussels. By improving our knowledge on the biological roles of ovothiols and pointing out the existence of sustainable natural sources for their isolation, this study provides the basis for future biotechnological investigations on these valuable compounds.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11368/3028706
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