Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Biomedical Research Profits From Exploration Of Deep Sea

Date:
November 27, 2008
Source:
Public Library of Science
Summary:
Exploration of the ocean depths can benefit humankind. This is the story of a voyage of discovery, starting with marine animals that glow, the identification of the molecules responsible and their application as marker in living cells.

Fluorescence image of a ceriantharian acquired in 530 m depth in the Gulf of Mexico. The depth (ft), temperature (Temp, °C) and the salinity (Salin) measured during image acquisition are displayed in the upper part of the panel.
Credit: Vogt et al., DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0003766

A new study highlights how the exploration of the ocean depths can benefit humankind. This is the story of a voyage of discovery, starting with marine animals that glow, the identification of the molecules responsible and their application as marker in living cells.

Many marine organisms such as sea anemones and corals produce fluorescent proteins, which come in a variety of dazzling hues. Fluorescent proteins have revolutionized biomedical research by enabling the imaging of processes within living cells and tissues. The impact of this technology is considered so high that the 2008 Nobel Prize in Chemistry was most recently awarded to scientists that discovered and further developed the first green fluorescent protein that was applied as cellular marker.

Many useful fluorescent proteins have been found in species that live in the sun-drenched tropical coral reefs. But much less is known about species living in the darkness of the deep sea.

An international team of scientists led by Jörg Wiedenmann of the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton, Mikhail Matz of the University of Texas in Austin and Charles Mazel from the company NightSea have explored the Gulf of Mexico using a submarine, the US Johnson-Sea-Link II, equipped with a system designed to detect fluorescence.

They discovered a species of a sea anemone-like animal (a ceriantharian, or tube anemone) – possibly a new species –that emits bright green fluorescence. They went on to identify a novel green fluorescent protein.

Although isolated from an animal that lives in essentially complete darkness at depths between 500 and 600 metres and at low temperatures (below 10 °C), the new fluorescent protein, named cerFP505, can be well applied as marker protein in mammalian cells at normal body temperature (37 °C).

The brightness and stability of cerFP505 are similar to other fluorescent proteins used in biomedical research. The fluorescence can be switched on and off in a controlled way by alternating blue and near-ultra violet light. These properties make cerFP505 an ideal lead structure for the development of marker proteins for super-resolution microscopy, say the researchers.

Further useful properties can potentially be built into the fluorescent protein by genetic engineering. "Moreover", they say, "the discovery of photoswitchable cerFP505 from a deep sea animal reveals the lightless depths of the oceans as a new reservoir of proteins with novel and highly desirable properties for imaging applications".

The authors of the paper are Alexander Vogt, Cecilia D'Angelo, Franz Oswald, Andrew Denzel, Charles Mazel. Mikhail Matz, Sergey Ivanchenko, Ulrich Nienhaus and Jörg Wiedenmann. This study was supported by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft and the NOAA Ocean Exploration Program ('Operation Deep Scope).


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Public Library of Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Vogt A, D'Angelo C, Oswald F, Denzel A, Mazel CH, et al. A Green Fluorescent Protein with Photoswitchable Emission from the Deep Sea. PLoS ONE, 3(11): e3766 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0003766

Cite This Page:

Public Library of Science. "Biomedical Research Profits From Exploration Of Deep Sea." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 November 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081119100820.htm>.
Public Library of Science. (2008, November 27). Biomedical Research Profits From Exploration Of Deep Sea. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081119100820.htm
Public Library of Science. "Biomedical Research Profits From Exploration Of Deep Sea." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081119100820.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

'Cadaver Dog' Sniffs out Human Remains

'Cadaver Dog' Sniffs out Human Remains

AP (Oct. 21, 2014) — Where's a body buried? Buster's nose can often tell you. He's a cadaver dog, specially trained to find human remains and increasingly being used by law enforcement and accepted in courts. These dogs are helping solve even decades-old mysteries. (Oct. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
White Lion Cubs Born in Belgrade Zoo

White Lion Cubs Born in Belgrade Zoo

AFP (Oct. 20, 2014) — Two white lion cubs, an extremely rare subspecies of the African lion, were recently born at Belgrade Zoo. They are being bottle fed by zoo keepers after they were rejected by their mother after birth. Duration: 00:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional Farming Methods Gaining Ground in Mali

Traditional Farming Methods Gaining Ground in Mali

AFP (Oct. 20, 2014) — He is leading a one man agricultural revolution in Mali - Oumar Diatabe uses traditional farming methods to get the most out of his land and is teaching others across the country how to do the same. Duration: 01:44 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Goliath Spider Will Give You Nightmares

Goliath Spider Will Give You Nightmares

Buzz60 (Oct. 20, 2014) — An entomologist stumbled upon a South American Goliath Birdeater. With a name like that, you know it's a terrifying creepy crawler. Sean Dowling (@SeanDowlingTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins