Stichopus hermanni and Stichopus vastus are sea cucumber species from the Stichopodidae family within the coastal waters of Malaysia. The integument of these invertebrates is hypothesised to contain abundant glycosaminoglycans (GAGs). GAGs are divided into non-sulphated and sulphated GAGs. Sulphated GAGs have various chemico-biological functions that are beneficial to humans. This study quantitatively analysed N-, O-sulphated and total sulphated GAG content from three different anatomical regions (integument, internal organs and coelomic fluid) of S. hermanni and S. vastus. The integument revealed the highest content of total, O- and N-sulphated GAGs, followed by the internal organs and the coelomic fluid for both species of sea cucumbers. The percentage division of O- and N-sulphated GAGs suggested that anatomical parts of both species showed higher levels of O-sulphated GAGs compared to N-sulphated GAGs. In conclusion, these findings indicate that the integument body wall of S. hermanni and S. vastus is a rich source of sulphated GAGs.
Di Malaysia, timun laut lebih dikenali sebagai Gamat. Di kalangan kaum Melayu,
gamat sering digunakan sebagai ubat tradisional untuk melegakan kesakitan,
merawat luka dan kesan terbakar. Ianya juga digunakan sebagai tonik untuk
memberi sumber tenaga tambahan. Stichopus chloronotus merupakan salah satu
spesies timun laut yang boleh didapati di Malaysia. Kajian ini bertujuan untuk
menentukan dos optimum ekstrak akues Stichopus chloronotus emulsi salap ke
atas luka pada model tikus. Beberapa siri kepekatan iaitu 0.1%, 0.5% dan 1%
ekstrak akues Stichopus chloronotus emulsi salap diberikan ke atas luka eksisi sekali
sehari selama 10 hari. Perubahan pada kawasan luka diukur dengan menggunakan
angkup dan gambar luka diambil pada hari pertama, ke-3, ke-6, ke-8 dan ke-10
selepas pembentukan luka. Keputusan daripada peratusan pengurangan luka dan
pemerhatian makroskopik akan menentukan dos optimum Stichopus chloronotus.
Hasil kajian menunjukkan, kumpulan tikus kajian yang menerima rawatan
Stichopus chloronotus 0.5% mempunyai peratusan pengurangan luka yang lebih
tinggi dan pemerhatian makroskopik yang lebih baik bermula dari hari ke-6 selepas
pembentukan luka berbanding kumpulan yang lain. Kesimpulannya, dos 0.5%
merupakan kepekatan optimum bagi Stichopus chloronotus memberikan kesan
kepada penyembuhan luka dan akan digunakan pada kajian sebenar
Sea cucumbers are marine invertebrates of the phylum of Echinodermata that have been used in Asian traditional medicine since ancient times. This study was conducted to investigate the antioxidant and cytotoxic properties of aqueous and organic extracts from two sea cucumber species, Holothuria edulis Lesson (Holothuriidae) and Stichopus horrens Selenka (Stichopodidae). Antioxidant activities of the extracts were evaluated by DPPH· and β-carotene bleaching assays, while MTT and trypan blue exclusion assays were used to demonstrate the cytotoxic effects of the extracts against two human cancer cell lines, non-small cell lung cancer cells (A549) and esophageal cancer cells (TE1). The results showed that both aqueous and organic extracts of H. edulis were able to scavenge DPH radical (IC50 at 2.04 mg/ml and 8.73 mg/ml, respectively). Aqueous and organic extracts of S. horrens inhibited 79.62% and 46.66% of β-carotene oxidation by linoleate free radical. On the other hand, the organic extract of S. horrens exhibited the highest cytotoxic effects against A549 and TE1 cancer cells giving IC50 at 15.5 and 4.0 μg/ml, respectively. In conclusion, the present study revealed that H. edulis and S. horrens contain promising levels of antioxidant and cytotoxic natural products that might be used for cancer prevention and treatment.
Five sea cucumber species including one new species of the genus Stichopus are reported from the shallow coral reefs of Straits of Malacca. The new species Stichopus fusiformiossa has unusual fusiform spicules in the tentacles, which are not found in the other species of the genus. Pseudo-tables and large perforated plates are newly recorded for Stichopus hermanni Semper, 1868 and Stichopus vastus Sluiter, 1887, respectively.
The unsustainable harvesting of sea cucumbers in the Straits of Malacca poses a danger of collapsing population of this marine resource. Recent survey revealed the absence of commercially important sea cucumber species like Stichopus horrens was alarming since there were a lot of taxonomical complications in identifying species from this genus. The knowledge of taxonomy and ecology is an integral part in determining resource management strategies and conservation of marine resources like sea cucumber.
The aqueous and ethanol extracts of Stichopus chloronotus Brandt were investigated for their effectiveness against guinea pig dermatophytosis caused by Microsporum canis and Trichophyton mentagrophytes using the hair root invasion test. The ethanol extract at 10 mg/ml showed 82.8 % efficacy against T. mentagrophytes while the aqueous extract at similar concentration showed 84.8% efficacy against M. canis infection, as compared to econazole which showed 100% efficacy against both infections. No adverse effect on the skin was observed in the treated animals. In conclusion, aqueous and ethanol extracts of S. chloronotus showed high antimycotic activity against experimentally induced dermatophytosis in guinea pigs.
The calcareous rings of two species of local sea cucumbers, Stichopus hermanni Semper and Holothuria atra Jaeger, were located, dissected, exposed and recorded. The calcareous rings of both species each composed of ten plates knit together by connective tissues. The radial plate of H. atra was a square with a notch at the anterior part whereas in S. hermanni it was squarish consisting of 4 ridges in the anterior part with a notch at the posterior part. The interradial plates of both species were smaller than the radial plates. A ridge was present at the anterior part of the interradial plate in H. atra. In S. hermanii, the ridge at the anterior part of the interradial was thin and prominent. Under the scanning electron microscope the calcareous rings from the two species exhibited a mosaic of small, numerous spicules bound to each other.
Despite its claimed therapeutic effects, the action of sea cucumber (known as gamat in the Malay language) on human osteoblast cells is still unknown. We performed in vitro studies utilising extract of Stichopus sp1 (gamat) to elucidate its effects on cell viability and functional activity. We found an inverse relationship between gamat concentration and its effect on osteoblast cell viability (p<0.001). Only gamat concentration at 1mg/ml significantly promoted cell viability at day 3 of incubation. There was a trend towards increased osteoblast cell function in the presence of gamat at 5mg/ml and 10mg/ml but this observation was not consistent at different incubation periods.
This study aimed to determine phylogenetic relationship between and among selected species of sea cucumbers (Echinodermata: Holothuroidea) using 16S mitochondrial ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene. Phylogenetic analyses of 37 partial sequences of 16S mitochondrial rRNA gene using three main methods namely neighbour joining (NJ), maximum parsimony (MP) and maximum likelihood (ML) showed the presence of five main genera of sea cucumbers: Molpadia from order Molpadiida and four genera of order Aspidochirotida namely Holothuria, Stichopus, Bohadschia and Actinopyga. All of the 17 species obtained from Malaysia distributed among the main genera except within Actinopyga. Interestingly, Holothuria excellens was out of Holothuria group causing Holothuria to be paraphyletic. High bootstrap value and consistent clustering made Molpadia, Stichopus, Bohadschia and Actinopyga monophyletic. The relationship of Actinopyga with the other genera was unclarified and Stichopus was sister to Molpadia. The latter finding caused the resolution at order level unclear. The pairwise genetic distance calculated using Kimura 2-parameter model further supported and verified findings from the phylogenetic trees. Further studies with more samples and different mitochondrial DNA genes need to be done to get a better view and verification on the molecular phylogeny of sea cucumbers.
The sea cucumber (Stichopus vastus) is an underutilized species, as most of its parts, including the integument (high collagen content) are thrown away during processing. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of different hydrolysis conditions (substrate to enzyme ratio (S/E), reaction temperature, and hydrolysis time) on the angiotensin I converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitory and radical scavenging (RSc) activities of the hydrolysates produced from trypsin hydrolysis of S. vastus collagen. Optimal conditions predicted by Box-Behnken Design modelling for producing ACE inhibitory and RSc hydrolysates were found to be S/E ratio (15), reaction temperature (55°C), and hydrolysis time (1 h). Under optimal conditions, ACE inhibitory and RSc activities were estimated to be as high as 67.8% and 77.9%, respectively. Besides, some novel bioactive peptides were identified through mass spectrometry analysis. These results indicate that S. vastus hydrolysates might be used as a functional ingredient in food and nutraceutical products.
Stichopus horrens flesh was explored as a potential source for generating peptides with angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitory capacity using 6 proteases, namely alcalase, flavourzyme, trypsin, papain, bromelain, and protamex. Degree of hydrolysis (DH) and peptide profiling (SDS-PAGE) of Stichopus horrens hydrolysates (SHHs) was also assessed. Alcalase hydrolysate showed the highest DH value (39.8%) followed by flavourzyme hydrolysate (32.7%). Overall, alcalase hydrolysate exhibited the highest ACE inhibitory activity (IC(50) value of 0.41 mg/mL) followed by flavourzyme hydrolysate (IC(50) value of 2.24 mg/mL), trypsin hydrolysate (IC(50) value of 2.28 mg/mL), papain hydrolysate (IC(50) value of 2.48 mg/mL), bromelain hydrolysate (IC(50) value of 4.21 mg/mL), and protamex hydrolysate (IC(50) value of 6.38 mg/mL). The SDS-PAGE results showed that alcalase hydrolysate represented a unique pattern compared to others, which yielded potent ACE inhibitory peptides with molecular weight distribution lower than 20 kDa. The evaluation of the relationship between DH and IC(50) values of alcalase and flavourzyme hydrolysates revealed that the trend between those parameters was related to the type of the protease used. We concluded that the tested SHHs would be used as a potential source of functional ACE inhibitory peptides for physiological benefits.
Malaysian sea cucumber was incorporated into hydrogel formulation by using electron beam irradiation technique and was introduced as novel cross-linked Gamat Hydrogel dressing. This study investigated whether Gamat Hydrogel enhanced repair of deep partial skin thickness burn wound in rats and its possible mechanism. Wounds were treated with either Gamat Hydrogel, control hydrogel, OpSite® film dressing or left untreated. Skin samples were taken at 7, 14, 21, and 28 days post burn for histological and molecular evaluations. Gamat Hydrogel markedly enhanced wound contraction and improved histological reorganization of the regenerating tissue. Furthermore, the dressing modulated the inflammatory responses, stimulated the activation and proliferation of fibroblasts, and enhanced rapid production of collagen fiber network with a consequently shorter healing time. The level of proinflammatory cytokines; IL-1α, IL-1β, and IL-6, were significantly reduced in Gamat Hydrogel treated wounds compared with other groups as assessed by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). In summary, our results showed that Gamat Hydrogel promoted burn wound repair via a complex mechanism involving stimulation of tissue regeneration and regulation of pro-inflammatory cytokines. The resultant wound healing effects were attributed to the synergistic effect of the hydrogel matrix and incorporated sea cucumber.
Sea cucumbers, belonging to the class Holothuroidea, are marine invertebrates, habitually found in the benthic areas and deep seas across the world. They have high commercial value coupled with increasing global production and trade. Sea cucumbers, informally named as bêche-de-mer, or gamat, have long been used for food and folk medicine in the communities of Asia and Middle East. Nutritionally, sea cucumbers have an impressive profile of valuable nutrients such as Vitamin A, Vitamin B1 (thiamine), Vitamin B2 (riboflavin), Vitamin B3 (niacin), and minerals, especially calcium, magnesium, iron and zinc. A number of unique biological and pharmacological activities including anti-angiogenic, anticancer, anticoagulant, anti-hypertension, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antioxidant, antithrombotic, antitumor and wound healing have been ascribed to various species of sea cucumbers. Therapeutic properties and medicinal benefits of sea cucumbers can be linked to the presence of a wide array of bioactives especially triterpene glycosides (saponins), chondroitin sulfates, glycosaminoglycan (GAGs), sulfated polysaccharides, sterols (glycosides and sulfates), phenolics, cerberosides, lectins, peptides, glycoprotein, glycosphingolipids and essential fatty acids. This review is mainly designed to cover the high-value components and bioactives as well as the multiple biological and therapeutic properties of sea cucumbers with regard to exploring their potential uses for functional foods and nutraceuticals.
The molecular mass distribution, amino acid composition and radical-scavenging activity of collagen hydrolysates prepared from collagen isolated from the sea cucumber Stichopus vastus were investigated. β and α1 chains of the collagen were successfully hydrolysed by trypsin. The molecular mass distribution of the hydrolysates ranged from 5 to 25 kDa, and they were rich in glycine, alanine, glutamate, proline and hydroxyproline residues. The hydrolysates exhibited excellent radical-scavenging activity. These results indicate that collagen hydrolysates from S. vastus can be used as a functional ingredient in food and nutraceutical products.
This preliminary study aimed to identify a commercial gamat species, Stichopus horrens Selenka, 1867, and a timun laut species, Holothuria (Mertensiothuria) leucospilota (Brandt, 1835), from Pangkor Island, Perak, Malaysia, employing morphological techniques based on the shape of the ossicles and molecular techniques based on the cytochrome c oxidase I (COI) mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) gene. In Malaysia, a gamat is defined as a sea cucumber species of the family Stichopodidae with medicinal value, and timun laut refers to non-gamat species. S. horrens is very popular on Pangkor Island as a main ingredient in the traditional production of air gamat and minyak gamat, while H. leucospilota is the most abundant species in Malaysia. In contrast to previous studies, internal body parts (the respiratory tree and gastrointestine) were examined in this study to obtain better inferences based on morphology. The results showed that there were no ossicles present in the gastrointestine of H. leucospilota, and this characteristic is suggested as a unique diagnostic marker for the timun laut species. In addition, the presence of Y-shaped rods in the respiratory tree of S. horrens subsequently supported the potential to use internal body parts to identify the gamat species. Phylogenetic analysis of the COI mtDNA gene of the sea cucumber specimens using the neighbour-joining method and maximum likelihood methods further confirmed the species status of H. leucospilota and S. horrens from Pangkor Island, Perak, Malaysia. The COI mtDNA gene sequences were registered with GenBank, National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), US National Library of Medicine (GenBank accession no.: KC405565-KC405568). Although additional specimens from various localities will be required to produce more conclusive results, the current findings provide better insight into the importance of complementary approaches involving morphological and molecular techniques in the identification of the two Malaysian sea cucumber species.
Sea cucumber (Stichopus vastus) is considered an underutilized resource, since only its stomach and intestines are eaten raw as salad in a few countries and the remaining parts, especially the integument rich in collagen, is discarded. Hence a valuable by-product having potential nutraceutical and pharmaceutical applications is wasted. In the present investigation, pepsin-solubilized collagen (PSC) from the integument of S. vastus was isolated, purified and characterized.