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Research Journal of Biological Sciences
Year: 2009  |  Volume: 4  |  Issue: 4  |  Page No.: 482 - 486

Novel Antibacterial Activity of Peptide Gene Extracted from Malaysian Sea Cucumber

Nagi A. Al-Haj, M.A. Norfarrah, Mariana, N. Shamsudin, Fatimah, M. Yusoff and Aziz Arshad    

Abstract: The emergence and spread of antimicrobial resistance in bacteria trigger the discovery of new antibiotics to be ushered in the new age of medicine. Diseases caused by gram positive bacteria become more deadly as the bacteria acquire new virulence factors, develop resistance to modern drug therapy, thus requiring new sources of antimicrobial agents. The sea represents the most promising source of medicinal and natural products of the future. Echinoderms are benthic organism, constantly exposed to high concentration of bacteria, viruses and fungi. Their survival depends on antimicrobial mechanism to protect themselves against microbial infection. In the search for antimicrobial peptide genes, utilization of molecular technique and antimicrobial activity bioassay of a species of sea cucumbers not commercially exploited from Beting Darat, Johore, were carried out. The gene of an antimicrobial peptide that acts by permeabilizing the membrane of bacterial pathogens were amplified at position 222 bp from one species of sea cucumber. The identity of the gene was confirmed by commercial sequencing and similarity, to published gene was determined through BLAST analysis. Four species of sea cucumbers and one species of tunicate were screened for antimicrobial activity using moist disc diffusion technique. Out of 5 samples, the methanol extract of sea cucumber give inhibition zones to 2 strains of Staphylococcus aureus and a strain of Streptococcus pyogenes. The utility of the sea cucumber not commercially exploited as biomedicinal resources offers an alternative horizon in drug discovery programmed from marine resources. Further, investigations on the importance of the antimicrobial peptide presence in the sea cucumber will be elucidated.

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