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RS Popov, NV Ivanchina, AA Kicha, TV Malyarenko, BB Grebnev, VA Stonik and PS Dmitrenok
Abstract
Glycoconjugated and other polar steroids of starfish have unique chemical structures and show a broad spectrum of biological activities. However, their biological functions remain not well established. Possible biological roles of these metabolites might be indicated by the studies on their distribution in the organism-producer. In order to investigate the localization of polar steroids in body components of the Far Eastern starfish Lethasterias fusca, chemical constituents of body walls, gonads, stomach, pyloric caeca, and coelomic fluid were studied by nanoflow liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry with captive spray ionization (nLC/CSI-QTOF-MS). It has been shown that the levels of polar steroids in the studied body components are qualitatively and quantitatively different. Generally, the obtained data confirmed earlier made assumptions about the digestive function of polyhydroxysteroids and protective role of asterosaponins. The highest level of polar steroids was found in the stomach. Asterosaponins were found in all body components, the main portion of free polyhydroxysteroids and related glycosides were located in the pyloric caeca. In addition, a great inter-individual variability was found in the content of most polar steroids, which may be associated with the peculiarities in their individual physiologic status.
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