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  1. Haque RA, Choo SY, Budagumpi S, Iqbal MA, Al-Ashraf Abdullah A
    Eur J Med Chem, 2015 Jan 27;90:82-92.
    PMID: 25461313 DOI: 10.1016/j.ejmech.2014.11.005
    A series of benzimidazole-based N-heterocyclic carbene (NHC) proligands {1-benzyl-3-(2-methylbenzyl)-benzimidazolium bromide/hexafluorophosphate (1/4), 1,3-bis(2-methylbenzyl)-benzimidazolium bromide/hexafluorophosphate (2/5) and 1,3-bis(3-(2-methylbenzyl)-benzimidazolium-1-ylmethylbenzene dibromide/dihexafluorophosphate (3/6)} has been synthesized by the successive N-alkylation method. Ag complexes {1-benzyl-3-(2-methylbenzyl)-benzimidazol-2-ylidenesilver(I) hexafluorophosphate (7), 1,3-bis(2-methylbenzyl)-benzimidazol-2-ylidenesilver(I) hexafluorophosphate (8) and 1,3-bis(3-(2-methylbenzyl)-benzimidazol-2-ylidene)-1-ylmethylbenzene disilver(I) dihexafluorophosphate (9)} of NHC ligands have been synthesized by the treatment of benzimidazolium salts with Ag2O at mild reaction conditions. Both, NHC proligands and Ag-NHC complexes have been characterized by (1)H and (13)C{(1)H} NMR and FTIR spectroscopy and elemental analysis technique. Additionally, the structure of the NHC proligand 5 and the mononuclear Ag complexes 7 and 8 has been elucidated by the single crystal X-ray diffraction analysis. Both the complexes exhibit the same general structural motif with linear coordination geometry around the Ag centre having two NHC ligands. Preliminary in vitro antibacterial potentials of reported compounds against a Gram negative (Escherichia coli) and a Gram positive (Bacillus subtilis) bacteria evidenced the higher activity of mononuclear silver(I) complexes. The anticancer studies against the human derived colorectal cancer (HCT 116) and colorectal adenocarcinoma (HT29) cell lines using the MTT assay method, revealed the higher activity of Ag-NHC complexes. The benzimidazolium salts 4-6 and Ag-NHC complexes 7-9 displayed the following IC50 values against the HCT 116 and HT29 cell lines, respectively, 31.8 ± 1.9, 15.2 ± 1.5, 4.8 ± 0.6, 10.5 ± 1.0, 18.7 ± 1.6, 1.20 ± 0.3 and 245.0 ± 4.6, 8.7 ± 0.8, 146.1 ± 3.1, 7.6 ± 0.7, 5.5 ± 0.8, 103.0 ± 2.3 μM.
  2. Asshifa Md Noh N, Al-Ashraf Abdullah A, Nasir Mohamad Ibrahim M, Ramli Mohd Yahya A
    J. Gen. Appl. Microbiol., 2012;58(2):153-61.
    PMID: 22688247
    A biosurfactant-producing and hydrocarbon-utilizing bacterium, Pseudomonas aeruginosa USM-AR2, was used to assist conventional distillation. Batch cultivation in a bioreactor gave a biomass of 9.4 g L(-1) and rhamnolipid concentration of 2.4 g L(-1) achieved after 72 h. Biosurfactant activity (rhamnolipid) was detected by the orcinol assay, emulsification index and drop collapse test. Pretreatment of crude oil TK-1 and AG-2 with a culture of P. aeruginosa USM-AR2 that contains rhamnolipid was proven to facilitate the distillation process by reducing the duration without reducing the quality of petroleum distillate. It showed a potential in reducing the duration of the distillation process, with at least 2- to 3-fold decreases in distillation time. This is supported by GC-MS analysis of the distillate where there was no difference between compounds detected in distillate obtained from treated or untreated crude oil. Calorimetric tests showed the calorie value of the distillate remained the same with or without treatment. These two factors confirmed that the quality of the distillate was not compromised and the incubation process by the microbial culture did not over-degrade the oil. The rhamnolipid produced by this culture was the main factor that enhanced the distillation performance, which is related to the emulsification of hydrocarbon chains in the crude oil. This biotreatment may play an important role to improve the existing conventional refinery and distillation process. Reducing the distillation times by pretreating the crude oil with a natural biosynthetic product translates to energy and cost savings in producing petroleum products.
  3. Fatin SN, Boon-Khai T, Shu-Chien AC, Khairuddean M, Al-Ashraf Abdullah A
    Front Microbiol, 2017;8:2267.
    PMID: 29201023 DOI: 10.3389/fmicb.2017.02267
    The resistance of Pseudomonas aeruginosa to conventional antimicrobial treatment is a major scourge in healthcare. Therefore, it is crucial that novel potent anti-infectives are discovered. The aim of the present study is to screen marine actinomycetes for chemical entities capable of overcoming P. aeruginosa infection through mechanisms involving anti-virulence or host immunity activities. A total of 18 actinomycetes isolates were sampled from marine sediment of Songsong Island, Kedah, Malaysia. Upon confirming that the methanolic crude extract of these isolates do not display direct bactericidal activities, they were tested for capacity to rescue Caenorhabditis elegans infected with P. aeruginosa strain PA14. A hexane partition of the extract from one isolate, designated as Streptomyces sp. CCB-PSK207, could promote the survival of PA14 infected worms by more than 60%. Partial 16S sequence analysis on this isolate showed identity of 99.79% with Streptomyces sundarbansensis. This partition did not impair feeding behavior of C. elegans worms. Tested on PA14, the partition also did not affect bacterial growth or its ability to colonize host gut. The production of biofilm, protease, and pyocyanin in PA14 were uninterrupted, although there was an increase in elastase production. In lys-7::GFP worms, this partition was shown to induce the expression of lysozyme 7, an important innate immunity defense molecule that was repressed during PA14 infection. GC-MS analysis of the bioactive fraction of Streptomyces sp. CCB-PSK207 revealed the presence of methyl esters of branched saturated fatty acids. In conclusion, this is the first report of a marine actinomycete producing metabolites capable of rescuing C. elegans from PA14 through a lys-7 mediated activity.
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