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Discovering bacterial symbionts diversity associated with ants in different Brazilian biomes

Grant number: 15/01001-6
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate
Effective date (Start): April 01, 2015
Effective date (End): March 31, 2019
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Microbiology - Applied Microbiology
Acordo de Cooperação: National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Principal Investigator:Mônica Tallarico Pupo
Grantee:Weilan Gomes da Paixão Melo
Host Institution: Faculdade de Ciências Farmacêuticas de Ribeirão Preto (FCFRP). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Ribeirão Preto , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:13/50954-0 - Novel therapeutic agents from the bacterial symbionts of Brazilian invertebrates, AP.BTA.TEM
Associated scholarship(s):16/17614-0 - Genomic analysis of Pseudonocardia and diversity of antibiotic-producing Actinobacteria associated with fungus-growing ants, BE.EP.PD


Natural products have provided valuable leads for drug design and development, and it is recognized that bacteria from Streptomycetaceae and Pseudonocardiaceae families are among the most prolific producers of natural products that have been developed into drugs. However, pharmaceutical companies have deemphasized their natural products discovery programs in the last decades. At the same time, a lower productivity in the development of new therapeutic agents for infectious diseases has been faced by those industries. Recently, Currie (AP3) and Clardy (AP5), co-investigators of this ICBG, have demonstrated that symbiotic bacteria are prolific sources of bioactive natural products used by their eukaryotic hosts as chemical defenses, revealing a new biological niche for natural products prospecting. There are numerous underexplored eukaryotic-bacterial symbiotic systems to be investigated for discovering potentially useful natural products for therapeutic development. Social insects (e.g., ants, termites, bees and wasps) are diverse and ecologically dominant taxa in tropical ecosystems and appear to host a number of bacterial symbionts. However, studies of natural products involved in these symbiotic relationships have been limited or nonexistent in Brazil. This project aims to isolate and identify bacterial symbionts from farming ants collected in Amazon, Atlantic Forest, Caatinga and Cerrado. (AU)

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Scientific publications (12)
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
FUKUDA, TAISE T. H.; PEREIRA, CAMILA F.; MELO, WEILAN G. P.; MENEGATTI, CARLA; ANDRADE, PAULO H. M.; GROPPO, MILTON; LACAVA, PAULO T.; CURRIE, CAMERON R.; PUPO, MONICA T.. Insights Into the Ecological Role of Pseudomonas spp. in an Ant-plant Symbiosis. FRONTIERS IN MICROBIOLOGY, v. 12, . (17/17305-0, 16/26230-0, 16/15576-3, 13/50954-0, 19/19099-3, 15/26349-5, 15/01001-6)
MENEGATTI, CARLA; LOURENZON, VITOR BRUNO; RODRIGUEZ-HERNANDEZ, DIEGO; DA PAIXAO MELO, WEILAN GOMES; GOMES FERREIRA, LEONARDO LUIZ; ANDRICOPULO, ADRIANO DEFINI; DO NASCIMENTO, FABIO SANTOS; PUPO, MONICA TALLARICO. Meliponamycins: Antimicrobials from Stingless Bee-Associated Streptomyces sp.. Journal of Natural Products, v. 83, n. 3, SI, p. 610-616, . (14/17620-4, 13/07600-3, 16/15576-3, 18/07153-0, 17/01188-4, 13/50954-0, 15/01001-6)
ORTEGA, HUMBERTO E.; BATISTA, JR., JOAO M.; MELO, WEILAN G. P.; CLARDY, JON; PUPO, MONICA T.. Absolute configurations of griseorhodins A and C. Tetrahedron Letters, v. 58, n. 50, p. 4721-4723, . (15/07089-2, 14/25222-9, 15/01001-6, 13/50954-0)
MENEGATTI, CARLA; DA PAIXAO MELO, WEILAN GOMES; CARRAO, DANIEL BLASCKE; MORAES DE OLIVEIRA, ANDERSON RODRIGO; DO NASCIMENTO, FABIO SANTOS; LOPES, NORBERTO PEPORINE; PUPO, MONICA TALLARICO. Paenibacillus polymyxa Associated with the Stingless Bee Melipona scutellaris Produces Antimicrobial Compounds against Entomopathogens. Journal of Chemical Ecology, v. 44, n. 12, p. 1158-1169, . (09/54098-6, 14/17620-4, 13/50954-0, 14/50265-3, 15/01001-6)
MELO, WEILAN GOMES DA PAIXAO; DE OLIVEIRA, TASSIO BRITO; ARCURI, SILVIO LOVATO; DE MORAIS, PAULA BENEVIDES; PAGNOCCA, FERNANDO CARLOS. Yeasts in the nests of the leaf-cutter ant Acromyrmex balzani in a Savanna biome: exploitation of community and metabolic diversity. ANTONIE VAN LEEUWENHOEK INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF GENERAL AND MOLECULAR MICROBIOLOGY, v. 114, n. 6, . (12/14594-7, 15/01001-6, 17/09000-4)
CONTI, RAPHAEL; CHAGAS, FERNANDA OLIVEIRA; CARABALLO-RODRIGUEZ, ANDRES MAURICIO; DA PAIXAO MELO, WEILAN GOMES; DO NASCIMENTO, ANDREA MENDES; CAVALCANTI, BRUNO COELHO; DE MORAES, MANOEL ODORICO; PESSOA, CLAUDIA; COSTA-LOTUFO, LETICIA VERAS; KROGH, RENATA; et al. Endophytic Actinobacteria from the Brazilian Medicinal Plant Lychnophora ericoides Mart. and the Biological Potential of Their Secondary Metabolites. CHEMISTRY & BIODIVERSITY, v. 13, n. 6, p. 727-736, . (08/00812-7, 08/09540-0, 13/07600-3, 09/17695-6, 12/21803-1, 15/01001-6)
FUKUDA, TAISE T. H.; HELFRICH, ERIC J. N.; MEYERS, EMILY; MELO, WEILAN G. P.; VAN ARNAM, ETHAN B.; ANDES, DAVID R.; CURRIE, CAMERON R.; PUPO, MONICA T.; CLARDY, JON. Specialized Metabolites Reveal Evolutionary History and Geographic Dispersion of a Multilateral Symbiosis. ACS CENTRAL SCIENCE, v. 7, n. 2, p. 292-299, . (17/17305-0, 15/26349-5, 15/01001-6, 13/50954-0)
RODRIGUEZ-HERNANDEZ, DIEGO; MELO, WEILAN G. P.; MENEGATTI, CARLA; LOURENZON, VITOR B.; DO NASCIMENTO, FABIO S.; PUPO, MONICA T.. Actinobacteria associated with stingless bees biosynthesize bioactive polyketides against bacterial pathogens. NEW JOURNAL OF CHEMISTRY, v. 43, n. 25, p. 10109-10117, . (17/01188-4, 13/50954-0, 14/17620-4, 16/15576-3, 15/01001-6, 18/07153-0)
ORTEGA, HUMBERTO E.; BATISTA, JR., JOAO M.; MELO, WEILAN G. P.; DE PAULA, GABRIELA T.; PUPO, MONICA T.. Structure and Absolute Configuration of Secondary Metabolites from Two Strains of Streptomyces chartreusis Associated with Attine Ants. Journal of the Brazilian Chemical Society, v. 30, n. 12, SI, p. 2672-2680, . (15/07089-2, 13/50954-0, 14/25222-9, 14/14095-6, 17/05920-1, 15/01001-6)
ORTEGA, HUMBERTO E.; FERREIRA, LEONARDO L. G.; MELO, WEILAN G. P.; OLIVEIRA, ANA LIGIA L.; RAMOS ALVARENGA, RENE F.; LOPES, NORBERTO P.; BUGNI, TIM S.; ANDRICOPULO, ADRIANO D.; PUPO, MONICA T.. Antifungal compounds from Streptomyces associated with attine ants also inhibit Leishmania donovani. PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, v. 13, n. 8, . (13/07600-3, 13/50954-0, 15/01001-6, 14/14095-6, 16/15872-1, 16/20154-0)
CHEVRETTE, MARC G.; CARLSON, CAITLIN M.; ORTEGA, HUMBERTO E.; THOMAS, CHRIS; ANANIEV, GENE E.; BARNS, KENNETH J.; BOOK, ADAM J.; CAGNAZZO, JULIAN; CARLOS, CAMILA; FLANIGAN, WILL; et al. The antimicrobial potential of Streptomyces from insect microbiomes. NATURE COMMUNICATIONS, v. 10, . (14/14095-6, 15/01001-6, 13/50954-0)
BRUNETTI, ANDRES E.; LYRA, MARIANA L.; MELO, WEILAN G. P.; ANDRADE, LAURA E.; PALACIOS-RODRIGUEZ, PABLO; PRADO, BARBARA M.; HADDAD, CELIO F. B.; PUPO, MONICA T.; LOPES, NORBERTO P.. Symbiotic skin bacteria as a source for sex-specific scents in frogs. PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, v. 116, n. 6, p. 2124-2129, . (17/23725-1, 14/20915-6, 13/50741-7, 17/26162-8, 13/50954-0, 14/50265-3, 15/01001-6)

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