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Food Funct 2019 Sep 01;109:5759-5767. doi: 10.1039/c9fo01357a.
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Black sea cucumber (Holothuria atra Jaeger, 1833) rescues Pseudomonas aeruginosa-infected Caenorhabditis elegans via reduction of pathogen virulence factors and enhancement of host immunity.

Lee WT , Tan BK , Eng SA , Yuen GC , Chan KL , Sim YK , Sulaiman SF , Shu-Chien AC .

A strategy to circumvent the problem of multidrug resistant pathogens is the discovery of anti-infectives targeting bacterial virulence or host immunity. Black sea cucumber (Holothuria atra) is a tropical sea cucumber species traditionally consumed as a remedy for many ailments. There is a paucity of knowledge on the anti-infective capacity of H. atra and the underlying mechanisms involved. The objective of this study is to utilize the Caenorhabditis elegans-P. aeruginosa infection model to elucidate the anti-infective properties of H. atra. A bioactive H. atra extract and subsequently its fraction were shown to have the capability of promoting the survival of C. elegans during a customarily lethal P. aeruginosa infection. The same entities also attenuate the production of elastase, protease, pyocyanin and biofilm in P. aeruginosa. The treatment of infected transgenic lys-7::GFP worms with this H. atra fraction restores the repressed expression of the defense enzyme lys-7, indicating an improved host immunity. QTOF-LCMS analysis revealed the presence of aspidospermatidine, an indole alkaloid, and inosine in this fraction. Collectively, our findings show that H. atra possesses anti-infective properties against P. aeruginosa infection, by inhibiting pathogen virulence and, eventually, reinstating host lys-7 expression.

PubMed ID: 31453615
Article link: Food Funct

Genes referenced: LOC100887844 LOC752081 LOC756768