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Title: Isolation And Characterization Of Antiviral Marine Microorganisms 
Author: Hansen, Maria L.K.
Date: 2005-08
Abstract: For an Island community, the ocean is a rich habitat abundant with life. It is a valuable and versatile source of food, revenue, recreation, and is of great economic importance. The ocean also acts as a source of many biologically active agents, which are assuming greater importance as they are discovered. The number of uses and users of the ocean will continue to increase in the coming decades. We have previously reported the presence of marine organisms that can inactivate human viruses, which are common in ocean waters receiving domestic sewage. In this study, we aimed to isolate and identify these marine anti-viral agents (MAVAs), determine their active principle(s), and to characterize the biological, chemical, and physical parameters that would enable their optimal culture in-vitro. In these experiments, we isolated marine bacteria that have significant antiviral activity against the human enterovirus, poliovirus type 1 (Sabin LSc2ab), from several sites around the island of Oahu. Antiviral activity in coastal marine waters was removed by: a) prior removal of bacteria by membrane filtration (0.45Iµm filter), or b) the addition of certain antibiotics used in previous studies (streptomycin, penicillin). MAVA activity was restored to filtered coastal waters upon seeding a small inoculum of natural marine coastal water and allowing the MAVAs to grow. These results indicate that natural populations of marine bacteria are responsible for antiviral activity. The bacterial isolate was provisionally identified by amplification and nucleotide sequencing of the 16s rRNA gene. The sequence was compared to others in the public domain using BLAST searches and confirmed as a Marinomonas sp. The potential applications of MAVAs are diverse and include, the biological control of viruses polluting the ocean ecosystem, control of disease transmission from sewage polluted waters, and chemotherapy for viral illnesses in humans and other animals.
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