Natural Products Chemistry & Research

ISSN - 2329-6836


Characterization of Benzoyl Saxitoxin Analogs from the Toxigenic Marine Dinoflagellate Gymnodinium catenatum by Hydrophilic Interaction Liquid Ion-Chromatography-Tandem Mass Spectrometry

Durán-Riveroll ML, Bernd Krock, Allan Cembella, Javier Peralta Cruz, Bustillos Guzmán JJ and Band Schmidt CJ

The chain-forming marine dinoflagellate Gymnodinium catenatum Graham has a remarkable capacity to produce a wide array of neurotoxic alkaloids associated with paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP). More than a decade ago, a completely new group of benzoyl saxitoxin analogs produced exclusively by this species was discovered, but the exact structural assignments and diversity among global population has remained elusive and unconfirmed in most cases. In the current study, fifteen among eighteen hypothetical benzoyl analogs were partially purified and identified from cultured isolates of Gymnodinium catenatum from the Pacific coast of Mexico. Combined serial application of flash chromatography, preparative liquid chromatography and tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) in multiple steps yielded a richness of benzoyl analogs that has not been reported nor confirmed before. Two sub-fractions were analyzed by 1H-NMR; results from one fraction showed a probable AMX pattern for three protons, consistent with the presence of a 3,4-dihydroxylated benzoyl ring. These findings could be interpreted to correct the 2,4- dihydroxylated structure previously proposed for the GCa benzoyl analog series. The revised and enhanced structural information on proposed benzoyl derivatives is necessary to provide further insights into biogeographical diversity of these potentially potent toxins produced by marine dinoflagellates and their role in seafood safety.