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Appl. Environ. Microbiol
Vol. 80, No. 1 2014, Pages: 146-153

Toxicity of Bioactive and Probiotic Marine Bacteria and Their Secondary Metabolites in Artemia sp. and Caenorhabditis elegans as Eukaryotic Model Organisms

Anna Katrin Neu, Maria Månsson, Lone Gram and María J. Prol-García

National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark, Lyngby, Denmark.


We have previously reported that some strains belonging to the marineActinobacteria class, the Pseudoalteromonas genus, the Roseobacter clade, and the Photobacteriaceae and Vibrionaceae families produce both antibacterial and antivirulence compounds, and these organisms are interesting from an applied point of view as fish probiotics or as a source of pharmaceutical compounds. The application of either organisms or compounds requires that they do not cause any side effects, such as toxicity in eukaryotic organisms. The purpose of this study was to determine whether these bacteria or their compounds have any toxic side effects in the eukaryotic organisms Artemia sp. and Caenorhabditis elegans. Arthrobacter davidanieli WX-11, Pseudoalteromonas luteoviolacea S4060, P. piscicida S2049, P. rubra S2471, Photobacterium halotolerans S2753, and Vibrio coralliilyticus S2052 were lethal to either or both model eukaryotes. The toxicity of P. luteoviolacea S4060 could be related to the production of the antibacterial compound pentabromopseudilin, while the adverse effect observed in the presence of P. halotolerans S2753 and V. coralliilyticus S2052 could not be explained by the production of holomycin nor andrimid, the respective antibiotic compounds in these organisms. In contrast, the tropodithietic acid (TDA)-producing bacteria Phaeobacter inhibens DSM17395 and Ruegeria mobilis F1926 and TDA itself had no adverse effect on the target organisms. These results reaffirm TDA-producing Roseobacter bacteria as a promising group to be used as probiotics in aquaculture, whereas ActinobacteriaPseudoalteromonas,Photobacteriaceae, and Vibrionaceae should be used with caution.


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