Screening for osteogenic activity in extracts from Irish marine organisms: The potential of Ceramium pallidum

Matthew A Carson, John Nelson, M Leonor Cancela, Vincent Laizé, Paulo J Gavaia, Margaret Rae, Svenja Heesch, Eugene Verzin, Brendan F Gilmore, Susan A Clarke

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Extracts and compounds derived from marine organisms have reportedly shown some osteogenic potential. As such, these bioactives may aid in the treatment of musculoskeletal conditions such as osteoporosis; helping to address inefficacies with current treatment options. In this study, 72 fractions were tested for their in vitro osteogenic activity using a human foetal osteoblast (hFOB) cell line and bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), focusing on their cytotoxic, proliferative and differentiation effects. Extracts dissolved in dimethyl sulfoxide and ethanol showed no significant osteogenic potential. However, two extracts derived from powder residues (left over from original organic extractions) caused a significant promotion of MSC differentiation. Bioactivity from powder residues derived from the epiphytic red algae Ceramium pallidum is described in detail to highlight its treatment potential. In vitro, C. pallidum was shown to promote MSC differentiation and extracellular matrix mineralisation. In vivo, this extract caused a significant increase in opercular bone growth of zebrafish larvae and a significant increase in bone density of regenerated adult caudal fins. Our findings therefore show the importance of continued screening efforts, particularly of novel extract sources, and the presence of bioactive compounds in C. pallidum extract.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e0207303
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 28 Nov 2018

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