Discovery of Novel Bioactive Compounds from Marine Organisms

Screen Shot 2016-03-10 at 11.18.57 AMAn interdisciplinary biodiversity-first approach, Concerted Discovery Strategy (CDS), which combines molecular phylogeny and chemical biology techniques, is used to discover novel peptides from venomous marine snails(cone snails, terebrids, and turrids). CDS allows for rapid delineation of snail lineages using peptide toxins to subdue their prey, and identification of peptide sequences using transcriptome data. CDS was successful applied to discover three novel cone snail peptide neurotoxins that inhibit sodium channel activity in the nervous system, CDS was also used to correlate molecular and anatomical analyses of terebrid snails to highlight those species that have a venom apparatus producing peptide toxins. Current publications in the lab highlight the application of CDS to terebrids and turrids,

Holford Laboratory at CUNY Hunter College