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Prevention of Marine Biofouling Using the Natural Allelopathic Compound Batatasin-Ill and Synthetic Analogues

Journal article
Authors L. W. K. Moodie
R. Trepos
Gunnar Cervin
K. A. Brathen
B. Lindgard
R. Reiersen
P. Cahil
Henrik Pavia
C. Hellio
J. Svenson
Published in Journal of Natural Products
Volume 80
Issue 7
Pages 2001-2011
ISSN 0163-3864
Publication year 2017
Published at Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences, Tjärnö Marine Biological Laboratory
Pages 2001-2011
Language en
Keywords blue-green-algae, antifouling activity, empetrum-hermaphroditum, bacterial attachment, environment, coatings, derivatives, aquaculture, herbivores, inhibitors, Plant Sciences, Pharmacology & Pharmacy
Subject categories Environmental Sciences


The current study reports the first comprehensive evaluation of a class of allelopathic terrestrial natural products as antifoulants in a marine setting. To investigate the antifouling potential of the natural dihydrostilbene scaffold, a library of 22 synthetic dihydrostilbenes with varying substitution patterns, many of which occur naturally in terrestrial plants, were prepared and assessed for their antifouling capacity. The compounds were evaluated in an extensive screen against 16 fouling marine organisms. The dihydrostilbene scaffold was shown to possess powerful general antifouling effects against both marine microfoulers and macrofoulers with inhibitory activities at low concentrations. The species of microalgae examined displayed a particular sensitivity toward the evaluated compounds at low ng/mL concentrations. It was shown that several of the natural and synthetic compounds exerted their repelling activities via nontoxic and reversible mechanisms. The activities of the most active compounds such as 3,5-dimethoxybibenzyl (5), 3,4-dimethoxybibenzyl (9), and 3-hyolroxy-3',4,5'-trirnethoxybibenzyl (20) were comparable to the commercial antifouling booster biocide. Sea-nine, which was employed as a positive control. The investigation of terrestrial allelopathic natural products to counter marine fouling represents a novel strategy for the design of "green" antifouling technologies, and these compounds offer a potential alternative to traditional biocidal antifoulants.

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