Cerulenin

From WikiMD's Wellness Encyclopedia

Cerulenin is a natural product that functions as an antibiotic and an inhibitor of fatty acid synthesis. It was first isolated from the fungus Cephalosporium caerulens. Cerulenin has been extensively studied for its ability to inhibit the enzyme fatty acid synthase (FAS), which is crucial for the synthesis of fatty acids in various organisms.

Chemical Structure and Properties[edit | edit source]

Cerulenin is a β-lactone compound with a unique structure that allows it to covalently bind to the active site of fatty acid synthase. This binding inhibits the enzyme's activity, thereby blocking the synthesis of fatty acids. The chemical formula of cerulenin is C12H17NO3.

Mechanism of Action[edit | edit source]

Cerulenin inhibits fatty acid synthase by binding to the cysteine residue in the active site of the enzyme. This covalent modification prevents the enzyme from catalyzing the condensation reactions necessary for fatty acid elongation. As a result, the synthesis of long-chain fatty acids is halted, which can lead to the disruption of cell membrane formation and function in bacteria and other organisms.

Biological Effects[edit | edit source]

Cerulenin has been shown to have a variety of biological effects due to its inhibition of fatty acid synthesis. In bacteria, it acts as an antibiotic by disrupting the synthesis of essential fatty acids, leading to cell death. In cancer research, cerulenin has been studied for its potential to inhibit the growth of cancer cells, which often have upregulated fatty acid synthesis pathways.

Applications in Research[edit | edit source]

Cerulenin is widely used in biochemical research to study the role of fatty acid synthesis in various biological processes. It has been used to investigate the metabolic pathways in microorganisms, the development of antibiotic resistance, and the metabolic requirements of cancer cells.

Related Compounds[edit | edit source]

Cerulenin is structurally related to other fatty acid synthesis inhibitors, such as C75 and orlistat. These compounds also target fatty acid synthase but may have different mechanisms of action or therapeutic applications.

See Also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

External Links[edit | edit source]


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Contributors: Prab R. Tumpati, MD