Kaarina Sivonen

Kaarina Sivonen
University of Helsinki | HY · Department of Food and Environmental Sciences

Ph D

About

572
Publications
65,381
Reads
How we measure 'reads'
A 'read' is counted each time someone views a publication summary (such as the title, abstract, and list of authors), clicks on a figure, or views or downloads the full-text. Learn more
23,920
Citations
Additional affiliations
August 2010 - present
University of Helsinki
Position
  • Professor (Full)
June 1991 - December 1992
University of Chicago
Position
  • Research Associate

Publications

Publications (572)
Article
Full-text available
Cyanobacteria are a group of oxygenic photosynthetic prokaryotes found in almost all habitats on earth including those characterized as extreme environments. It has been observed that the number of studies dealing with the biodiversity of extremophilic cyanobacteria is limited while studies exploring their bioactive potential are even scarcer. The...
Article
Full-text available
Puwainaphycins (PUW) and minutissamides (MIN) are structurally homologous cyclic lipopeptides that exhibit high structural variability and possess antifungal and cytotoxic activities. While only a minor variation can be found in the amino acid composition of the peptide cycle, the fatty acid (FA) moiety varies largely. The effect of FA functionaliz...
Article
Full-text available
Low-molecular weight natural products display vast structural diversity and have played a key role in the development of novel therapeutics. Here we report the discovery of novel members of the aeruginosin family of natural products, which we named varlaxins. The chemical structures of varlaxins 1046A and 1022A were determined using a combination o...
Article
Full-text available
Microbial natural products are compounds with unique chemical structures and diverse biological activities. Cyanobacteria commonly possess a wide range of biosynthetic gene clusters (BGCs) to produce natural products. Although natural product BGCs have been found in almost all cyanobacterial genomes, little attention has been given in cyanobacteria...
Article
Full-text available
Serine proteases regulate many physiological processes and play a key role in a variety of cancers. Aeruginosins are a family of natural products produced by cyanobacteria that exhibit pronounced structural diversity and potent serine protease inhibition. Here, we sequenced the complete genome of Nodularia sphaerocarpa UHCC 0038 and identified the...
Article
Water bloom-forming cyanobacteria have a severe impact on freshwater quality. Although some cyanobacterial toxins such as microcystins have been studied extensively, other toxins like anatoxin-a (ATX) and their structural analogs - as well as cyanobacterial taxa producing these toxins remain to be explored in detail. The present study investigated...
Article
Full-text available
Laxaphycins are a family of cyclic lipopeptides with synergistic antifungal and antiproliferative activities. They are produced by multiple cyanobacterial genera and comprise two sets of structurally unrelated 11- and 12-residue macrocyclic lipopeptides. Here, we report the discovery of new antifungal laxaphycins from Nostoc sp. UHCC 0702, which we...
Article
Full-text available
Cyanobacteria produce a variety of chemically diverse cyclic lipopeptides with potent antifungal activities. These cyclic lipopeptides have an ampiphatic structure comprised of a polar peptide cycle and hydrophobic fatty acid side chain. Many have antibiotic activity against a range of human and plant fungal pathogens. This review article aims to s...
Article
Full-text available
Sponges form symbiotic relationships with diverse and abundant microbial communities. Cyanobacteria are among the most important members of the microbial communities that are associated with sponges. Here, we performed a genus-wide comparative genomic analysis of the newly described marine benthic cyanobacterial genus Leptothoe (Synechococcales). W...
Article
Full-text available
NordAqua is a multidisciplinary Nordic Center of Excellence funded by NordForsk Bioeconomy program (2017-2022). The research center promotes Blue Bioeconomy and endeavours to reform the use of natural resources in a environmentally sustainable way. In this short communication, we summarize particular outcomes of the consortium. The key research pro...
Article
Full-text available
Harmful cyanobacterial blooms, which frequently contain toxic secondary metabolites, are reported in aquatic environments around the world. More than two thousand cyanobacterial secondary metabolites have been reported from diverse sources over the past fifty years. A comprehensive, publically-accessible database detailing these secondary metabolit...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background Microbial natural products have unique chemical structures and diverse biological activities. Cyanobacteria commonly possess a wide range of biosynthetic gene clusters to produce natural products. Several studies have mapped the distribution of natural product biosynthetic gene clusters in cyanobacterial genomes. However, little attentio...
Article
Full-text available
Cyanobacteria produce a wide range of lipopeptides that exhibit potent membrane-disrupting activities. Laxaphycins consist of two families of structurally distinct macrocyclic lipopeptides that act in a synergistic manner to produce antifungal and antiproliferative activities. Laxaphycins are produced by range of cyanobacteria but their biosyntheti...
Preprint
Full-text available
Bacteria produce a wide range of lipopeptides that exhibit membrane-disrupting activities. Laxaphycins are structurally distinct macrocyclic lipopeptides that act together to produce synergistic antifungal and antiproliferative activities. Laxaphycins are produced by range of cyanobacteria but their biosynthetic origins remain unclear. Here we iden...
Article
Full-text available
Background Brasilonema is a cyanobacterial genus found on the surface of mineral substrates and plants such as bromeliads, orchids and eucalyptus. B. octagenarum stands out among cyanobacteria due to causing damage to the leaves of its host in an interaction not yet observed in other cyanobacteria. Previous studies revealed that B. octagenaum UFV-...
Preprint
Full-text available
Cyanobacteria form harmful mass blooms in freshwater and marine environments around the world. A range of secondary metabolites has been identified from cultures of cyanobacteria and biomass collected from cyanobacterial bloom events. A comprehensive database is necessary to correctly identify cyanobacterial metabolites and advance research on thei...
Article
Full-text available
Cyanobacteria produce an array of toxins that pose serious health risks to humans and animals. The closely related diazotrophic genera, Anabaena, Dolichospermum, and Aphanizomenon, frequently form poisonous blooms in lakes and brackish waters around the world. These genera form a complex now termed the Anabaena, Dolichospermum, and Aphanizomenon (A...
Article
Full-text available
Global warming, paired with eutrophication processes, is shifting phytoplankton communities towards the dominance of bloom-forming and potentially toxic cyanobacteria. The ecosystems of shallow lakes are especially vulnerable to these changes. Traditional monitoring via microscopy is not able to quantify the dynamics of toxin-producing cyanobacteri...
Article
Full-text available
The bloom-forming cyanobacterium Nodularia spumigena CENA596 encodes the biosynthetic gene clusters (BGCs) of the known natural products nodularins, spumigins, anabaenopeptins/namalides, aeruginosins, mycosporin-like amino acids, and scytonemin, along with the terpenoid geosmin. Targeted metabolomics confirmed the production of these metabolic comp...
Article
Full-text available
Cyanobacteria are photosynthetic organisms that produce a large diversity of natural products with interesting bioactivities for biotechnological and pharmaceutical applications. Cyanobacterial extracts exhibit toxicity towards other microorganisms and cancer cells and, therefore, represent a source of potentially novel natural products for drug di...
Article
Medicinal plants are a prolific source of natural products with remarkable chemical and biological properties, many of which have considerable remedial benefits. Numerous medicinal plants are suffering from wildcrafting, and thus biotechnological production processes of their natural products are urgently needed. The plant Aster tataricus is widely...
Article
Prenylation is a common step in the biosynthesis of many natural products and plays an important role in increasing their structural diversity and enhancing biological activity. Muscoride A is a linear peptide alkaloid that contain two contiguous oxazoles and unusual prenyl groups that protect the amino and carboxy termini. Here we identified the 1...
Article
Heterotrophic bacteria are important drivers of nitrogen (N) cycling and the processing of dissolved organic matter (DOM). Projected increases in precipitation will potentially cause increased loads of riverine DOM to the Baltic Sea and likely affect the composition and function of bacterioplankton communities. To investigate this, the effects of r...
Article
Full-text available
Hassallidins are cyclic glycolipopeptides produced by cyanobacteria and other prokaryotes. The hassallidin structure consists of a peptide ring of eight amino acids where a fatty acid chain, additional amino acids, and sugar moieties are attached. Hassallidins show antifungal activity against several opportunistic human pathogenic fungi, but does n...
Article
Full-text available
Microcystins are a family of chemically diverse hepatotoxins produced by distantly related cyanobacteria and are potent inhibitors of eukaryotic protein phosphatases 1 and 2A. Here we provide evidence for the biosynthesis of rare variants of microcystin that contain a selection of homo-amino acids by the benthic strain Phormidium sp. LP904c. This s...
Article
Full-text available
The Baltic Sea is a shallow basin of brackish water in which the spatial salinity gradient is one of the most important factors contributing to species distribution. The Baltic Sea is infamous for its annual cyanobacterial blooms comprised of Nodularia spumigena, Aphanizomenon spp., and Dolichospermum spp. that cause harm, especially for recreation...
Article
Herein, we deciphered the most important biosynthetic traits of a prominent group of bioactive lipopeptides. We reveal evidence for initiation of biosynthesis by two alternative starter units hardwired directly in the same gene cluster, eventually resulting in the production of a remarkable range of lipopeptide variants. We identified several unusu...
Article
Aromatic prenylation is an important step in the biosynthesis of many natural products and leads to an astonishing diversity of chemical structures. Cyanobactin pathways frequently encode aromatic prenyltransferases that catalyze the prenylation of these macrocyclic and linear peptides. Here we characterized the anacyclamide (acy) biosynthetic gene...
Article
Parasites, such as bacterial viruses (phages), can have large effects on host populations both at the ecological and evolutionary levels. In the case of cyanobacteria, phages can reduce primary production and infected hosts release intracellular nutrients influencing planktonic food web structure, community dynamics and biogeochemical cycles. Cyano...
Article
Full-text available
Cyanobactins are a family of linear and cyclic peptides produced through the post-translational modification of short precursor peptides. A mass spectrometry-based screening of potential cyanobactin producers led to the discovery of a new prenylated member of this family of compounds, sphaerocyclamide (1), from Sphaerospermopsis sp. LEGE 00249. The...
Article
Trypsin-3 is a highly active protease that has recently been identified as a potential therapeutic target for the reduction of tumor growth and metastasis in prostate, breast and pancreatic cancers. Current trypsin inhibitors typically inhibit a broad range of different trypsin-like enzymes. Thus, novel approaches to identify trypsin-3 selective in...
Article
Full-text available
Prenylation is a widespread modification that im-proves the biological activities of secondary metab-olites. This reaction also represents a key modifica-tion step in biosyntheses of cyanobactins, a family of ribosomally synthesized and posttranslationally modified peptides (RiPPs) produced by cyanobac-teria. In cyanobactins, amino acids are common...
Article
The pederin family includes a number of bioactive compounds isolated from symbiotic organisms of diverse evolutionary origin. Pederin is linked to beetle-induced dermatitis in humans and pederin family members possess potent antitumor activity caused by selective inhibition of the eukaryotic ribosome. Their biosynthesis is accomplished by a polyket...
Article
Full-text available
Salinity is an important abiotic factor controlling the distribution and abundance of Nodularia spumigena, the dominating diazotrophic and toxic phototroph, in the brackish water cyanobacterial blooms of the Baltic Sea. To expand the available genomic information for brackish water cyanobacteria, we sequenced the isolate Nodularia spumigena UHCC 00...
Article
Full-text available
Nodularia spumigena is a nitrogen-fixing cyanobacterium that forms toxic blooms in the Baltic Sea each summer and the availability of phosphorous is an important factor limiting the formation of these blooms. Bioinformatic analysis identified a phosphonate degrading (phn) gene cluster in the genome of N. spumigena suggesting that this bacterium may...