Comparative Metabolomics Reveals Fungal Conversion of Co-Existing Bacterial Metabolites within a Synthetic Aspergillus-Streptomyces Community
Mar Drugs. 2021 Sep 19;19(9):526. doi: 10.3390/md19090526.
In nature, secondary metabolites have been proven to be the essential communication media between co-occurring microorganisms and to influence their relationship with each other. In this study, we conducted a metabolomics survey of the secondary metabolites of an artificial co-culture related to a hydrothermal vent fungal-bacterial community comprising Aspergillus sclerotiorum and Streptomyces and their reciprocal relationship. The fungal strain was found to increase the secretion of notoamides and the compound cyclo(Pro-Trp) produced by the actinomycetes strain was discovered to be the responsible molecule. This led to the hypothesis that the fungi transformed cyclo(Pro-Trp) synthesized by the actinomycetes as the biosynthetic precursors of notoamides in the chemical communication. Further analysis showed Streptomyces sp. WU20 was efficient in transforming amino acids into cyclo(Pro-Trp) and adding tryptophan as well as proline into the chemical communication enhanced the induction of the notoamide accumulation. Thus, we propose that the microbial transformation during the synthetic metabolically-mediated chemical communication might be a promising means of speeding up the discovery of novel bioactive molecules. The objective of this research was to clarify the mechanism of microbial transformation for the chemical communication. Besides, this research also highlights the utility of mass spectrometry-based metabolomics as an effective tool in the direct biochemical analysis of community metabolites.