Study on the antimicrobial activities and metabolic profiles of five Usnea species from the Philippines

dela Cruz T.E.E., Timbreza L.P., Sangvichien E., Notarte K.I.R. & Santiago K.A.A.
Journal of Fungi
9(11): 1117 [15 p.]
The rapid emergence of resistant bacteria is occurring worldwide, endangering the efficacy of antibiotics. Hence, there is a need to search for new sources of antibiotics that either exhibit novel structures or express a new mechanism of action. The lichen Usnea, with its wide range of unique, biologically potent secondary metabolites, may solve this problem. In this study, Usnea species were collected in the Northern Philippines, identified through combined morphological and biochemical characterization, and tested for antimicrobial activities against the multidrug-resistant ESKAPE pathogens, i.e., Enterococcus faecalis, Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Acinetobacter baumannii, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Enterobacter cloacae, two standard antibiotic-sensitive test bacteria, and a yeast. A total of 46 lichen specimens were collected and later identified as Usnea baileyi (10), U. diffracta (10), U. glabrata (12), U. longissima (4), and U. rubicunda (10). The results show that the crude extracts of the Usnea species exhibited promising in vitro inhibitory activities against standard antibiotic-sensitive (E. faecalis ATCC 29212) and multidrug-resistant (methicillin-resistant S. aureus and E. faecalis) Gram-positive bacteria. Additionally, lichen compounds of representative specimens per species were identified and profiled using thin-layer chromatography (TLC) and high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). The detection of lichen acids (LA) via HPLC showed the presence of 24 peaks of lichen acids. TLC-bioautography identified the bioactive lichen acids as alectronic acid, connorstictic acid, consalazinic acid, diffractaic acid, echinocarpic acid, erythrin acid, galbinic acid, hypoconstictic acid, hyposalazinic acid, hypostictic acid, lobaric acid, menegazzaic acid, micareic acid, pannarin, salazinic acid, stictic acid, and usnic acid. Our study highlighted the wide spectrum of opportunities for using lichens for the discovery of potential antimicrobial agents. Keywords: bioactivities; ESKAPE pathogens; fruticose lichens; lichen acids; secondary metabolites.
Sunday, 19 November 2023 19:11