Special Issue "The Mechanisms of Action of Bioactive Marine Natural Products"

A special issue of Marine Drugs (ISSN 1660-3397).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 November 2021).

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Ana M.M. Gonçalves
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Marine and Environmental Sciences Centre, Faculty of Sciences and Technology, University of Coimbra, 3004-517 Coimbra, Portugal
Interests: fatty acids; proteins; amino acids; carbohidrates; fibres content; ecotoxicology; aquatic ecology; trophic webs; microplastics

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The last decade has witnessed an increased interest and search for new natural compounds from marine biodiversity, including fungi, bacteria, algae, and invertebrates, to discover novel bioactive substances. Still, we are a long way from discovering the applications of this new natural compounds, especially since any applications need to be cost-efficient and economically viable from an ecological point of view. Some marine organisms produce significant amounts of primary and secondary metabolites that present a wide variety of bioactive properties, including antioxidant, antiviral, antimicrobial, antitumoral or anti-inflammatory, with also antibiotic properties. These molecules are promising candidates for many possible applications such as in pharmaceutical, nutraceutical, cosmetic, and medicine areas but also in agriculture or feeding. Still, some substances may be poisonous to humans and to other organisms, or become toxic over a certain quantity. These molecules may affect the respiratory, neuromuscular, gastrointestinal, cardiovascular and central nervous systems. Bioactive compounds may also play an ecological role in the defense of the organisms under environmental stresses and threats.

This Special Issue invites the submission of original research or review papers, highlighting the mechanisms of action of bioactive marine natural products with a focus on biological and chemical properties, their roles and potential applications, and awareness of a sustainable use of these natural resources.

Prof. Dr. Ana M.M. Gonçalves
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Marine Drugs is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • Marine natural compounds
  • Novel molecules
  • Bioactivities
  • Life-forms
  • Mechanism of action
  • Biological and chemical properties
  • Applications
  • Sustainability of marine resources

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Dieckol Ameliorates Aβ Production via PI3K/Akt/GSK-3β Regulated APP Processing in SweAPP N2a Cell
Mar. Drugs 2021, 19(3), 152; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/md19030152 - 15 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 882
The proteolytic processing of amyloid precursor protein (APP) by β-secretase (BACE1) and γ-secretase releases amyloid-β peptide (Aβ), which deposits in amyloid plaques and contributes to the initial causative events of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). In the present study, the regulatory mechanism of APP processing [...] Read more.
The proteolytic processing of amyloid precursor protein (APP) by β-secretase (BACE1) and γ-secretase releases amyloid-β peptide (Aβ), which deposits in amyloid plaques and contributes to the initial causative events of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). In the present study, the regulatory mechanism of APP processing of three phlorotannins was elucidated in Swedish mutant APP overexpressed N2a (SweAPP N2a) cells. Among the tested compounds, dieckol exhibited the highest inhibitory effect on both intra- and extracellular Aβ accumulation. In addition, dieckol regulated the APP processing enzymes, such as α-secretase (ADAM10), β-secretase, and γ-secretase, presenilin-1 (PS1), and their proteolytic products, sAPPα and sAPPβ, implying that the compound acts on both the amyloidogenic and non-amyloidogenic pathways. In addition, dieckol increased the phosphorylation of protein kinase B (Akt) at Ser473 and GSK-3β at Ser9, suggesting dieckol induced the activation of Akt, which phosphorylated GSK-3β. The specific phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) inhibitor LY294002 triggered GSK-3β activation and Aβ expression. In addition, co-treatment with LY294002 noticeably blocked the effect of dieckol on Aβ production, demonstrating that dieckol promoted the PI3K/Akt signaling pathway, which in turn inactivated GSK-3β, resulting in the reduction in Aβ levels. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Mechanisms of Action of Bioactive Marine Natural Products)
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