Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, Vol.105, No.19, 7053-7067, 2021
Recent advances in the discovery of novel marine natural products and mycosporine-like amino acid UV-absorbing compounds
Bioactive compounds from marine environments represent a rich source of bioproducts for potential use in medicine and biotechnology. To discover and identify novel marine natural products (MNPs), evaluating diverse biological activities is critical. Increased sensitivity and specificity of omics technologies, especially next-generation high-throughput sequencing combined with liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry and nuclear magnetic resonance, are speeding up the discovery of novel bioactive compounds. Mycosporine-like amino acids (MAAs) isolated from many marine microorganisms are among highly promising MNPs characterized by ultraviolet radiation (UV) absorbing capacities and are recognized as a potential source of ecologically friendly sunscreens. MAAs absorb damaging UV radiation with maximum absorption in the range of 310-360 nm, including both UVA and UVB ranges. MAAs are also characterized by other biological activities such as anti-oxidant, anti-cancer, and anti-inflammatory activities. The application of modern omics approaches promoted some recent developments in our understanding of MAAs' functional significance and diversity. This review will summarize the various modern tools that could be applied during the identification and characterization of MNPs, including MAAs, to further their innovative applications.