Inhibition of chromosome separation in fertilized starfish eggs by kalihinol F, a topoisomerase I inhibitor obtained from a marine sponge.

Research paper by Emi E Ohta, Shinji S Ohta, Tomokatsu T Hongo, Yukihisa Y Hamaguchi, Toshiwo T Andoh, Masaki M Shioda, Susumu S Ikegami

Indexed on: 04 Dec '03Published on: 04 Dec '03Published in: Bioscience, biotechnology, and biochemistry


Kalihinol F, a naturally occurring diterpene from a marine sponge, Acanthella sp., inhibited chromosome separation in fertilized starfish (Asterina pectinifera) eggs but allows the first cleavage to occur, thereby forming unseparated metaphase chromosomes which were elongated between the two daughter cells. The chromosomes were eventually torn off in the embryonic cells. Most of the cells gradually lost the chromosomes during the cell cycle progression. The embryonic development halted at the morula stage just before the onset of blastulation. The mitotic failure occurred when kalihinol F was applied to a fertilized egg during the second meiotic process, but not after the completion of the second meiotic division. Kalihinol F inhibited topoisomerase I activity in vitro, but had no effects on activities of DNA polymerases alpha, beta, and gamma, and of topoisomerase II. These results suggest that the topoisomerase I plays an essential role in meiosis II in this species.