Title

Biosynthesis of 1-hydroxycorticosterone in the Winter Skate Leucoraja ocellata: Evidence to Suggest a Novel Steroidogenic Route

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

7-2017

Department

Coastal Sciences, Gulf Coast Research Laboratory

Abstract

The present study explores the ability of intracellular bacteria within the renal‐inter‐renal tissue of the winter skate Leucoraja ocellata to metabolize steroids and contribute to the synthesis of the novel elasmobranch corticosteroid, 1α‐hydroxycorticosterone (1α‐OH ‐B). Despite the rarity of C1 hydroxylation noted in the original identification of 1α‐OH ‐B, literature provides evidence for steroid C1 hydroxylation by micro‐organisms. Eight ureolytic bacterial isolates were identified in the renal‐inter‐renal tissue of L. ocellata , the latter being the site of 1α‐OH ‐B synthesis. From incubations of bacterial isolates with known amounts of potential 1α‐OH ‐B precursors, one isolate UM008 of the genus Rhodococcus was seen to metabolize corticosteroids and produce novel products via HPLC analysis. Cations Zn2+ and Fe3+ altered metabolism of certain steroid precursors, suggesting inhibition of Rhodococcus steroid catabolism. Genome sequencing of UM008 identified strong sequence and structural homology to that of Rhodococcus erythropolis PR4 . A complete enzymatic pathway for steroid‐ring oxidation as documented within other Actinobacteria was identified within the UM008 genome. This study highlights the potential role of Rhodococcus bacteria in steroid metabolism and proposes a novel alternative pathway for 1α‐OH ‐B synthesis, suggesting a unique form of mutualism between intracellular bacteria and their elasmobranch host.

Publication Title

Journal of Fish Biology

Volume

91

Issue

1

First Page

260

Last Page

277

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