Induction of Phlorotannins and Gene Expression in the Brown Macroalga Fucus vesiculosus in Response to the Herbivore Littorina littorea

Type Article
Date 2021-04
Language English
Author(s) Emeline Creis Bendelac1, 2, Ludovic Delage1, Laurent Vallet1, Catherine LeblancORCID1, Kruse Inken3, Erwan Ar Gall4, Florian WeinbergerORCID3, Philippe Potin1
Affiliation(s) 1 : Integrative Biology of Marine Models (LBI2M), CNRS, Sorbonne Université, UMR 8227, Station Biologique, Place Georges Teissier, 29680 Roscoff, Brittany, France
2 : International Research Laboratory IRL 3614, CNRS, Sorbonne Université, PUC, UACH, Evolutionary Biology and Ecology of Algae, EBEA, Station Biologique, 29680 Roscoff, Brittany, France
3 : Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research (GEOMAR), Düsternbrooker Weg 20, 24105 Kiel, Germany
4 : Laboratoire des Sciences de l’Environnement Marin, UBO European Institute for Marine Studies IUEM, University of Brest—Western Brittany, UMR 6539 LEMAR, Technopôle Brest Iroise, Rue Dumont d’Urville, 29280 Plouzané, Brittany, France
Source Marine Drugs (1660-3397) (MDPI AG), 2021-04 , Vol. 19 , N. 4 , P. 185 (15p.)
DOI 10.3390/md19040185
WOS© Times Cited 2
Note This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Phenolics: Intrinsic and Extrinsic Drivers of Variability in Content and Composition - Impacts on Bioactivity and Applications in Biotechnology
Keyword(s) phlorotannins, inducible defense, gene expression, grazing, Fucus vesiculosus

Mechanisms related to the induction of phlorotannin biosynthesis in marine brown algae remain poorly known. Several studies undertaken on fucoid species have shown that phlorotannins accumulate in the algae for several days or weeks after being exposed to grazing, and this is measured by direct quantification of soluble phenolic compounds. In order to investigate earlier inducible responses involved in phlorotannin metabolism, Fucus vesiculosus was studied between 6 and 72 h of grazing by the sea snail Littorina littorea. In this study, the quantification of soluble phenolic compounds was complemented by a Quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) approach applied on genes that are potentially involved in either the phlorotannin metabolism or stress responses. Soluble phlorotannin levels remained stable during the kinetics and increased significantly only after 12 h in the presence of grazers, compared to the control, before decreasing to the initial steady state for the rest of the kinetics. Under grazing conditions, the expression of vbpo, cyp450 and ast6 genes was upregulated, respectively, at 6 h, 12 h and 24 h, and cyp450 gene was downregulated after 72 h. Interestingly, the pksIII gene involved in the synthesis of phloroglucinol was overexpressed under grazing conditions after 24 h and 72 h. This study supports the hypothesis that phlorotannins are able to provide an inducible chemical defense under grazing activity, which is regulated at different stages of the stress response.

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Emeline Creis Bendelac, Ludovic Delage, Laurent Vallet, Catherine Leblanc, Kruse Inken, Erwan Ar Gall, Florian Weinberger, Philippe Potin (2021). Induction of Phlorotannins and Gene Expression in the Brown Macroalga Fucus vesiculosus in Response to the Herbivore Littorina littorea. Marine Drugs, 19(4), 185 (15p.). Publisher's official version : , Open Access version :