alexa Marine Invertebrate-Associated Bacteria in Coral Reef Ecosystems as a New Source of Bioactive Compounds | OMICS International | Abstract
ISSN: 2473-3350

Journal of Coastal Zone Management
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Review Article

Marine Invertebrate-Associated Bacteria in Coral Reef Ecosystems as a New Source of Bioactive Compounds

Abstract

Coral reefs are the most species-rich environments in the oceans. Reefs cover 0.2% of the ocean’s area
and yet they provide home to one-third of marine fishes and to tens of thousands of other species. Coral
reefs provide essential fish habitat, support endangered and threatened species, and harbor protected
marine mammals. Despite the obvious ecological value of these habitats, most coral reefs around the
world, including Indonesia’s, are threatened or already being destroyed by human activities. The search
for bio-active compounds extracted from coral reef invertebrates which is emerging as an area of
increasing interest among biotechnological companies, further threatens the integrity of the reef
ecosystem.
It would be of great interest to find alternative sources of these compounds, in order to
preserve this precious environment and also to obtain higher amounts of these bi-active molecules.
Increasing observations suggest that a number of bio-active metabolites obtained from invertebrates are
in fact produced by associated microorganisms: this has prompted research into the rapidly expanding
field of study of metabolites derived from microorganisms associated with reef invertebrates. The
possibility to culture relevant microorganisms in bioreactors would enable the production of large
amounts of the bio-molecules of interest, at the same time preserving the marine ecosystem from
exploitation.

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