Open Access Te Herenga Waka-Victoria University of Wellington
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Natural Products Analysis of South Pacific Marine Sponges

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posted on 2023-03-10, 00:35 authored by Taufa, Taitusi

This thesis describes the isolation and structure elucidation of 15 new secondary metabolites from Tongan and New Zealand marine sponges. A total of 18 sponge specimens were subjected to an NMR-based screening method, of which four were analysed in detail. Examination of a two-sponge association, Stelletta crater and Desmacella dendyi from New Zealand, resulted in the isolation of two new 4-methylenesterols, craterols A (94) and B (95). To the best of the author’s knowledge, compounds 94 and 95 represent the first secondary metabolites to be reported from either species. Both 94 and 95 possess a double bond between C-5 and C-6, a feature that is unprecedented in this subgroup of marine natural products. An investigation of a Tongan sponge Zyzzya fuliginosa afforded two new pyrroloquinoline alkaloids, 6-bromodamirone B (182) and makaluvamine W (183). Makaluvamine W (183) contains an oxazole moiety, which is uncommon in this group of natural products. Both 182 and 183 lacked activity against the human promyelocytic leukemia cells (HL-60). Five new compounds were isolated from a Tongan sponge of the genus Leucetta, including two glycerol lipids (238 and 239), three glycerol ethers (244–246) and an imidazole alkaloid (243). Naamidine K (243) is a new addition to the naamidine family, while the glycerol metabolites are non-imidazole alkaloid additions to the group of compounds reported from this genus. A spectroscopic investigation into the Tongan sponge Cacospongia mycofijiensis yielded four new zampanolide analogues (282–285) and a new oxygenated sesquiterpene, isodictyodendrillin A (280). The isolation of the zampanolide analogues gives insight into the structure-activity relationship (SAR) in this family of compounds. Zampanolides B–D (282–284) displayed potent antiproliferative activity towards HL-60 cell lines in the low nanomolar range (3–5 nM), while zampanolide E (285) was significantly less potent with an IC50 value of 306 nM. In addition, the re-isolation of dactylolide (281) and zampanolide A (278) from this sponge, established a firm conclusion regarding the controversial configuration of dactylolide (281), which possesses the same absolute configuration as (–)-zampanolide A (278) and has a levorotatory optical rotation.


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Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

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Degree Grantor

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

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Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Doctoral Thesis



Victoria University of Wellington School

School of Chemical and Physical Sciences


Northcote, Peter; Keyzers, Rob