Identification of Isethionic Acid and Other Small Molecule Metabolites of Fragilariopsis cylindrus with Nuclear Magnetic Resonance
Dan Bearden, Arezue F. Boroujerdi, Peter A. Lee, Giacomo R. DiTullio, Michael G. Janech, Sarah B. Vied
Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR)-spectroscopy has been used to obtain metabolic profiles of the polar diatom Fragilariopsis cylindrus, leading to the identification of a novel metabolite in this organism. Initial results from an ongoing metabolomics study have led to the discovery of isethionic acid (2-hydroxyethanesulphonic acid, CAS: 107-36-8) as a major metabolite in F. cylindrus. This compound is being produced by the organism under normal culture conditions. This finding is the first report of a diatom producing isethionic acid. In addition to isethionic acid, four other metabolites, dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP), betaine, a trigonelline-like compound, and proline were present and may serve as osmoprotectants in F. cylindrus. NMR-based metabolite profiles of F. cylindrus were obtained along a growth curve of the organism. The relative concentration levels of the five metabolites were monitored over a growth period of F. cylindrus from 18 to 25 days. All showed an increase in relative concentration with time, except for proline, which began to decrease after day 21.