Antitumor effects of two novel naturally occurring terpene quinones isolated from the Mediterranean ascidian Aplidium conicum.
ABSTRACT The ascidian Aplidium conicum collected along Sardinia coasts (Italy) contained two novel prenylated benzoquinones, designated thiaplidiaquinone A (1) and thiaplidiaquinone B (2). These compounds showed an unprecedented tetracyclic structure. We have studied the pro-apototic mechanisms of both prenylated benzoquinones in the Jurkat cell line that is derived from a human T lymphoma, and we show that both compounds induce a strong production of intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) in this cell line. Moreover, kinetic experiments, comparing the timing of ROS induction with the collapse of the mitochondria potential (DeltaPsi(m)), clearly showed that ROS preceded the disruption of the mitochondrial potential, and the later one paralleled the appearance of apoptotic cells. Thus, thiaplidiaquinones A and B can enter into the cells and induce cell death by apoptosis.
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ABSTRACT: Ascidians of the genus Aplidium are recognized as an important source of chemical diversity and bioactive natural products. Among the compounds produced by this genus are non-nitrogenous metabolites, mainly prenylated quinones and hydroquinones. This review discusses the isolation, structural elucidation, and biological activities of quinones, hydroquinones, rossinones, longithorones, longithorols, floresolides, scabellones, conicaquinones, aplidinones, thiaplidiaquinones, and conithiaquinones. A compilation of the 13C-NMR spectral data of these compounds is also presented.Marine Drugs 01/2014; 12(6):3608-3633. · 3.98 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Meroterpenes are widely distributed among marine organisms; they are particularly abundant within brown algae, but other important sources include microorganisms and invertebrates. In the present review the structures and bioactivities of meroterpenes from marine invertebrates, mainly sponges and tunicates, are summarized. More than 300 molecules, often complex and with unique skeletons originating from intra- and inter-molecular cyclizations, and/or rearrangements, are illustrated. The reported syntheses are mentioned. The issue of a potential microbial link to their biosynthesis is also shortly outlined.Marine Drugs 01/2013; 11(5):1602-1643. · 3.98 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Ascidians, invertebrates belonging to the subphylum Urochordata (Tunicata), are renowned for their great chemical diversity, and during the last 25years, they have been shown to produce an array of cytotoxic molecules. Among the first six marine-derived compounds that have reached clinical trials as antitumor agents, three are derived from ascidians, as evidence of the high potential of these organisms as a new source of antitumor compounds. Reported in this communication are some recent results on the chemistry of Mediterranean ascidians; a number of new molecules with different structural features but all endowed with antiproliferative or cytotoxic activity are discussed. These results strongly evidence the highly significant role that Mediterranean ascidians natural products could play in anticancer drug discovery and development process.Phytochemistry Reviews 01/2009; 8(2):461-472. · 4.15 Impact Factor