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Study of secondary metabolites produced by an endophytic fungus associated with fruits of Syzygium cumini (L.) Skeels

Grant number: 09/17348-4
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): March 01, 2010
Effective date (End): January 31, 2011
Field of knowledge:Physical Sciences and Mathematics - Chemistry
Principal Investigator:Edson Rodrigues Filho
Grantee:Enzo Monte Canedo
Home Institution: Centro de Ciências Exatas e de Tecnologia (CCET). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil


Micro-organisms are an important source of bioactive compounds. Their symbiotic or pathogenic interactions with host plants in their natural habitat leads to greater diversity of secondary metabolites. The "Jambolão" (Syzygium cumini (L.) Skeels) is a plant belonging to the family of Mirtacea, often used in popular medicine, which produces a structurally very rich variety of metabolites, such as aliphatic hydrocarbons, flavonoids, and terpenes. Despite reports in the literature of fungi associated with Mirtacea, especially pathogenic fungi, no chemical study of these micro-organisms have been found. This scientific initiation project proposed for the student Enzo Monte Canedo, aimed at the study of secondary metabolites production by a micro-organism isolated from fruit of Syzygium cumini (l.) Skeels. As the micro-organism isolated was found alone and apparently dominates the possible plant microbiote, these sugars rich edible fruits deserves a careful chemical study to check the presence of fungal metabolites accumulated during its colonization. Our main goal is to verify the production potential of secondary metabolites in artificial culture media and subsequently the detection of these compounds in the Jambolão fruits. In preliminary work, some classes of substances produced by this fungus, such as fatty acids and triterpenos, have already been detected, but has not yet been characterized. The project envisages the intensive use of various chromatographic techniques, such as HPLC and GC, and NMR and MS spectroscopy. This enhancement in organic analysis capacity, as well as interpretation and contextualization of results are the expected training goals for the scientific proposal initiation stage for the student E. M. Canedo.