Display Settings:

Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Mar Drugs. 2010 Jul 20;8(7):2185-211. doi: 10.3390/md8072185.

Neurotoxic alkaloids: saxitoxin and its analogs.

Author information

  • 1School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW, 2052, Australia. m.wiese@student.unsw.edu.au

Abstract

Saxitoxin (STX) and its 57 analogs are a broad group of natural neurotoxic alkaloids, commonly known as the paralytic shellfish toxins (PSTs). PSTs are the causative agents of paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP) and are mostly associated with marine dinoflagellates (eukaryotes) and freshwater cyanobacteria (prokaryotes), which form extensive blooms around the world. PST producing dinoflagellates belong to the genera Alexandrium, Gymnodinium and Pyrodinium whilst production has been identified in several cyanobacterial genera including Anabaena, Cylindrospermopsis, Aphanizomenon Planktothrix and Lyngbya. STX and its analogs can be structurally classified into several classes such as non-sulfated, mono-sulfated, di-sulfated, decarbamoylated and the recently discovered hydrophobic analogs--each with varying levels of toxicity. Biotransformation of the PSTs into other PST analogs has been identified within marine invertebrates, humans and bacteria. An improved understanding of PST transformation into less toxic analogs and degradation, both chemically or enzymatically, will be important for the development of methods for the detoxification of contaminated water supplies and of shellfish destined for consumption. Some PSTs also have demonstrated pharmaceutical potential as a long-term anesthetic in the treatment of anal fissures and for chronic tension-type headache. The recent elucidation of the saxitoxin biosynthetic gene cluster in cyanobacteria and the identification of new PST analogs will present opportunities to further explore the pharmaceutical potential of these intriguing alkaloids.

KEYWORDS:

PSP; PSTs; STX; alkaloid analogs; neurotoxins; paralytic shellfish poisoning; paralytic shellfish toxins; saxitoxin

PMID:
20714432
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2920551
Free PMC Article

Images from this publication.See all images (2)Free text

Figure 1
Figure 2
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute (MDPI) Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk