Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) encompass a constant challenge in environmental, economical and biosafety issues due to several impacts caused in the affected ecosystems by them, in particular that ones involving the production of phycotoxins. Seafood contamination has commonly led to human poisoning and also to expressive losses in the fisheries and aquaculture industries, printing a current and global concern. Despite the fact that many secondary metabolites from microalgae are known, the chemodiversity from several species seems to be unclear and not so explored. In this sense, the prospecting of the biosynthetic potential from these microorganisms can boost the discovery of untapped compounds and mainly to assist in seafood risk assessment programs. Owing to these perspectives, the project aims the chemical investigation of the secondary metabolism of microalgae from Prymnesium and Cylindrospermopsis (cyanobacteria) genus, by the use of integrated analytical approaches. Studies of HRMS based molecular networking as well as UHPLC-HRMS and HRMS/MS based dereplication will be applied in combination to microbial compounds data base queries. The strategy will further faster and more effective screenings from unknown metabolites produced by the species, in different incubation media. The use of semi-preparative chromatography and NMR-1/2D data analysis will respectively enable the isolation and the structural elucidation of the target compounds. The new molecules produced by species of Prymnesium and Cylindrospermopsis will be evaluated according to their ichthyotoxicity and toxic activity in human cells. The obtained results will support a better comprehension about the chemical mechanisms involving massive losses of food from aquatic systems, as well as assist in monitoring programs in HAB outbreaks.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: