Biotechnology and genetics of ergot alkaloids

  title={Biotechnology and genetics of ergot alkaloids},
  author={Paul Tudzynski and Telmo Correia and Ulrich Keller},
  journal={Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology},
Abstract. Ergot alkaloids, i.e. ergoline-derived toxic metabolites, are produced by a wide range of fungi, predominantly by members of the grass-parasitizing family of the Clavicipitaceae. Naturally occurring alkaloids like the D-lysergic acid amides, produced by the "ergot fungus" Claviceps purpurea, have been used as medicinal agents for a long time. The pharmacological effects of the various ergot alkaloids and their derivatives are due to the structural similarity of the tetracyclic ring… 
Identification of a critical gene in the dihydroergot alkaloid pathway
Results indicate that easM encodes the enzyme that oxidizes festuclavine to fumigaclavine B, which will be instrumental in future studies investigating the biosynthesis of dihydrolysergic acid derivatives, which are derived from fest Euclavine and are the basis for important vasorelaxant drugs.
Ergot Alkaloids: A Review on Therapeutic Applications
Structural resemblance with various neurotransmitters allows them to interact with a number of receptors which makes them work on different target thus designing new ergot based drugs with receptor subtype selectivity will be more effective.
Ergot Alkaloid Biosynthesis in Aspergillus fumigatus: FgaAT Catalyses the Acetylation of Fumigaclavine B
A gene cluster for the biosynthesis of fumigaclavine C was identified with bioinformatics approaches in the genome sequence of A. purpurea and a cluster for a clavinetype ergot alkaloid lacking the peptidyl moiety provided a convenient way to identify candidate genes that are involved in the common stages of the biosynthetic process by comparison of the two clusters.
Origins and significance of ergot alkaloid diversity in fungi.
The important ergot alkaloid intermediate chanoclavine-I produced in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae by the combined action of EasC and EasE from Aspergillus japonicus
It is shown here that EasE and EasC are both necessary and sufficient for the production of chanoclavine-I in yeast, and important new information is provided about the involvement of ER and protein folding for proper functional expression of EasE.
Ergot: from witchcraft to biotechnology.
Molecular genetics has provided detailed insight into the genetic basis of ergot alkaloid biosynthesis and opened up perspectives for the design of new alkaloids and the improvement of production strains, revealing the refined infection strategy of this biotrophic pathogen.
Ergot alkaloids: synthetic approaches to lysergic acid and clavine alkaloids.
This review re-introduced the history of ergot alkaloids, and summarized all the natural products and semi-synthetic derivatives of er GOT alkaloid drugs from raw materials obtained by fermentation since 2000.
Fungal Origin of Ergoline Alkaloids Present in Dicotyledonous Plants (Convolvulaceae)
The presence of ergoline alkaloid producing fungi in dicotyledonous plants is not based on their capacity to synthesize erg Caroline alkaloids but rather on the ability to live in a symbiotic association with ergoline alchemical producing fungi.


The era of rational medicinal use of ergot drugs in the form of alkaloid mixtures extracted from sclerotia of Claviceps purpurea began only about one hundred years ago and doubts on the identity of the alkaloids as the active principle of the ergot drug remained until 1918, when Stoll succeeded to crystallise ergotamine.
Historical view on ergot alkaloids.
Once a dreaded poison, ergot has changed its role over the centuries to become a rich treasure house of valuable pharmaceuticals, which has resulted in the elucidation of their structures and total syntheses and preparation of valuable therapeutics.
Physiological study of ergot: induction of alkaloid synthesis by tryptophan at the enzymatic level
The results with thiotryptophan indicate that the phosphate effect cannot be explained merely on the basis of a block of tryptophan synthesis, and can overcome the block of alkaloid synthesis by inorganic phosphate.
Relationship between the Claviceps life cycle and productivity of ergot alkaloids
AbstractThe morphology, biochemistry, and physiology studies during development of Claviceps purpurea fungi clearly demonstrate that alkaloid synthesis is linked to a specific stage of the fungal
Evidence for an ergot alkaloid gene cluster in Claviceps purpurea
Results strongly suggest that at least some genes of ergot alkaloid biosynthesis in C. purpurea are clustered, opening the way for a detailed molecular genetic analysis of the pathway.
Study of the alkaloid composition of the food-infecting penicilles.
The range of metabolites synthesized by different strains of the same species was considerably expanded and the alkaloid composition and content were dependent on the medium, culture age and method of cultivation.
Production of peptide ergot alkaloids in submerged culture by three isolates of Claviceps purpurea.
Three strains of Claviceps purpurea (Fr.) Tul., isolated from sclerotia grown on rye, produce under submerged conditions ergocryptine and ergotamine, ergocornine and ergosine, and ergocristine,
The Claviceps purpurea gene encoding dimethylallyltryptophan synthase, the committed step for ergot alkaloid biosynthesis.
The first pathway-specific step of ergot alkaloid biosynthesis in the fungus, Claviceps purpurea, is catalyzed by the prenyltransferase, 4-(gamma,gamma-dimethylallyl)tryptophan synthase. Partial
Microsomal oxygenases involved in ergoline alkaloid biosynthesis of various Claviceps strains
Feedback inhibition of agroclavine 17‐monooxygenase by elymoclavine was demonstrated under in vitro conditions and other properties suggest that both clavine specific enzymes are cytochrome P‐450 dependent monooxygenases.