Microbial Ecology

, Volume 69, Issue 3, pp 512–524 | Cite as

Two Streptomyces Species Producing Antibiotic, Antitumor, and Anti-Inflammatory Compounds Are Widespread Among Intertidal Macroalgae and Deep-Sea Coral Reef Invertebrates from the Central Cantabrian Sea

  • Afredo F. Braña
  • Hans-Peter Fiedler
  • Herminio Nava
  • Verónica González
  • Aida Sarmiento-Vizcaíno
  • Axayacatl Molina
  • José L. Acuña
  • Luis A. García
  • Gloria Blanco
Environmental Microbiology


Streptomycetes are widely distributed in the marine environment, although only a few studies on their associations to algae and coral ecosystems have been reported. Using a culture-dependent approach, we have isolated antibiotic-active Streptomyces species associated to diverse intertidal marine macroalgae (Phyllum Heterokontophyta, Rhodophyta, and Chlorophyta), from the central Cantabrian Sea. Two strains, with diverse antibiotic and cytotoxic activities, were found to inhabit these coastal environments, being widespread and persistent over a 3-year observation time frame. Based on 16S rRNA sequence analysis, the strains were identified as Streptomyces cyaneofuscatus M-27 and Streptomyces carnosus M-40. Similar isolates to these two strains were also associated to corals and other invertebrates from deep-sea coral reef ecosystem (Phyllum Cnidaria, Echinodermata, Arthropoda, Sipuncula, and Anelida) living up to 4.700-m depth in the submarine Avilés Canyon, thus revealing their barotolerant feature. These two strains were also found to colonize terrestrial lichens and have been repeatedly isolated from precipitations from tropospheric clouds. Compounds with antibiotic and cytotoxic activities produced by these strains were identified by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and database comparison. Antitumor compounds with antibacterial activities and members of the anthracycline family (daunomycin, cosmomycin B, galtamycin B), antifungals (maltophilins), anti-inflamatory molecules also with antituberculosis properties (lobophorins) were identified in this work. Many other compounds produced by the studied strains still remain unidentified, suggesting that Streptomyces associated to algae and coral ecosystems might represent an underexplored promising source for pharmaceutical drug discovery.


Avilés Canyon Antracyclines Lobophorins Maltophilins Streptomyces cyaneofuscatus Streptomyces carnosus 

Accession numbers

HG965212 HG965214 HG965215 HG965216 



This study was financially supported by the Universidad de Oviedo (UNOV-11-MA-02), Gobierno del Principado de Asturias (SV-PA-13-ECOEMP-62), and Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad, Proyecto DOSMARES/BIOCANT (MICINN-10-CTM2010-21810-C03-02). The authors are grateful to Ricardo Anadón and all other participants in the BIOCANT3 campaign. The authors want to thank all the people who contributed to sample collection, especially to Gloria Blanco Sotura, Manuela Blanco, Rubén Medina, and Noé Medina. We are also grateful to Santiago Cal for his valuable help and José L. Caso and José A. Guijarro for continuous support. We finally thank Miguel Campoamor and Marcos García for their excellent technical assistance and M.C. Macián (CECT) for her help in the identification of the strains. This is a contribution of the Asturian Marine Observatory.

Supplementary material

248_2014_508_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (92 kb)
Supplementary 1 Phenotypes of M-27 and M-40 strains grown in R5A agar plates. Pictures were taken after 5 days of growth and correspond to (A) sporulated cultures, and (B) the back side of the plates. (PDF 91 kb)
248_2014_508_MOESM2_ESM.pdf (75 kb)
Supplementary 2 Antibiograms against M. luteus (A) and E. coli ESS (B) of ethyl acetate extracts from M-27 and M-40 strains obtained after 5 days of growth in solid R5A medium. The extracts were obtained from 7 ml of culture under neutral (n) and acidic (a) conditions and resuspended in 50 μl of DMSO-methanol from which 15 μl were loaded onto the discs. (PDF 74 kb)
248_2014_508_MOESM3_ESM.pdf (31 kb)
Supplementary 3 Cell survival percentage in cytotoxicity assays with acidic ethyl acetate extracts from M-27 and M-40 strains carried out against two different tumour cell lines: HeLa, from cervical carcinoma, and HCT116, from colorectal carcinoma. The fact that the 1/10 diluted M-27 extracts appear more active than the undiluted ones against both cell lines could be explained by assay interferences due to the high complexity of the sample, which might contain other compounds with antagonist activity only observed at high concentrations. (PDF 31 kb)
248_2014_508_MOESM4_ESM.pdf (221 kb)
Supplementary 4 Volatile profile of marine Streptomyces species obtained through GS-MS analysis. Peak numbers indicate the compounds identified by comparison with the Whiley dabase as: geosmin (8); beta-patchoulene (9). (PDF 221 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Afredo F. Braña
    • 1
  • Hans-Peter Fiedler
    • 2
  • Herminio Nava
    • 3
  • Verónica González
    • 1
  • Aida Sarmiento-Vizcaíno
    • 1
  • Axayacatl Molina
    • 4
  • José L. Acuña
    • 4
  • Luis A. García
    • 5
  • Gloria Blanco
    • 1
  1. 1.Departamento de Biología Funcional, Área de Microbiologíae Instituto Universitario de Oncología del Principado de Asturias. Universidad de OviedoOviedoSpain
  2. 2.Mikrobiologisches InstitutUniversität TübingenTübingenGermany
  3. 3.Departamento de Biología de Organismos y Sistemas. Área de BotánicaUniversidad de OviedoOviedoSpain
  4. 4.Departamento de Biología de Organismos y Sistemas. Área de EcologíaUniversidad de OviedoOviedoSpain
  5. 5.Departamento de Ingeniería Química y Tecnología del Medio Ambiente. Área de Ingeniería QuímicaUniversidad de OviedoOviedoSpain

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