ContextMarine fungi are microscopic eukaryotic organisms found from the foreshore to the deep sea, in a pelagic or benthic form and associated or not with other organisms. Thanks to their large diversity, they represent an interesting potential source of new and unique biomolecules.
Started in 2020, funded by Biogenouest, CatalyMar is an inter-regional Bretagne and Pays de la Loire federative project initiated by nine platforms of the Biogenouest network (ThalassOMICS, Biodimar, PRISM, KISSf, ImPACcell, IMPACT, Therassay, GenOuest and ABiMS). By promoting scientific discussions on the implementation of innovative strategies adapted to marine bioprospecting, the objective is to catalyse the identification of new bioactive marine natural products. In particular, CatalyMAR focuses on a promising biotechnological and under studied resource: filamentous marine fungi. It represents an interesting potential and renewable source of high added value molecules.
Filamentous fungi have the ability to survive in hostile conditions, particularly in the marine environment, and to defend and protect themselves against all other organisms that surround them, notably by producing anti-bacterial (penicillin being the best known example), antifouling or antioxidant molecules. Several examples can be found in the literature. Their capacity to produce specialized (or secondary) metabolites far exceeds that of other organisms (such as bacteria for example). Moreover, they constitute a sustainable, renewable resource that can be exploited on a large scale (by fermentative processes) to custom-produce metabolites with high added value in relation to the various potential activities mentioned above.
Partners involved in CatalyMar focused on biological activities that can be used in therapeutics (kinase inhibitors, anti-bacterials), cosmetics (antioxidants) or biocontrol (anti-biofilms). The collaborative integrated environment CeSGO support interaction between partners, project management, and communication.
CatalyMar will provide a proof of concept, which will enable interaction between academic and private partners and stakeholders from the socio-economic world in order to create a valorisation pipeline that can subsequently be adapted to multiple marine resources.