Isolation of Novel Anti-Inflammatory Agents Derived from the Symbiotic Dinoflagellate, Pseudopterogorgia elisabethae

Florida Atlantic University


Natural products are organic compounds, which are isolated from natural sources such as marine organism, microorganisms and plants. These organisms rely mainly on their chemical defence by producing these compounds also termed as secondary metabolites. Further, natural products are a source of new pharmaceutical agents and recent studies have indicated that approximately 60% of antitumour and anti-infective agents that are commercially available or in the late stages of clinical trails are of natural product origin.


Researchers at Florida Atlantic University aim to identify a microbial source of potent anti-inflammatory agents, the pseudopterosins. In particular, the microorganism to be identified is the dinoflagellate symbiont of the gorgonian coral Pseudopterogorgia elisabethae.


The pseudopterosins are extremely potent anti-inflammatory agents initially only available from a soft coral. The identification of a microbial source of these compounds should allow for the development of a sustainable production method via cell culture thus making these compounds readily available for the first time.


We have successfully identified novel anti-inflammatory agents isolated from Pseudopterogorgia elisabethae, a gorgonian sea coral.


Applications of pseudopterosins may be used to treat, prevent, or inhibit rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, rheumatic carditis, collagen and autoimmune diseases such as myasthenia gravis, allergic diseases, bronchial asthma and ocular, skin inflammatory diseases such as poison ivy, and proliferative diseases such as psoriasis. Further, it is useful as adjuvant therapy associated with organ and tissue transplants and any neurological disease involving the metabolism of nervous tissue phospholipid such as multiple sclerosis. In addition, it can be useful in the treatment of insect bites, bee or wasp stings or any venom in which a major constituent is the enzyme phospholipse A2. Please enquire below quoting reference no. 2001-08 if you are interested in forming licensing partnerships regarding our novel discovery.

U.S. Patent Application
& PCT filed 10/04/2002
Published: 06/05/2003

Dr. Russell G. Kerr

Abstract Details

Pipeline Status: Early Stage Research
Platform: Therapeutic
Published Date: 1 Feb 2016
Original Date: 23 Aug 2005

Contact Details

Contact Person: Kurt R. Moore
Florida Atlantic University
Office of Technology Transfer, Division of Research
Research Park One, 777 Glades Road, PO Box 3091, RP-1
Boca Raton
United States
Telephone: +1 561 297 1165
Fax: +1 561 297 2141
Web URL:
Therapeutic Areas:
Infectious Disease
Respiratory Disease