Cytotoxic compounds from the marine-derived fungus Aspergillus sp. recovered from the sediments of the Brazilian coast

A fungal strain of Aspergillus sp. (BRF 030) was isolated from the sediments collected in the northeast coast of Brazil, and the cytotoxic activity of its secondary metabolites was investigated against HCT-116 tumour cell line. The cytotoxicity-guided fractionation of the extracts from this fungus cultured in potato-dextrose-sea water for 14 days at room temperature yielded the hetero-spirocyclic γ-lactams pseurotin A (1), pseurotin D (2) and pseurotin FD-838 (7), the alkaloids fumitremorgin C (5), 12,13-dihydroxy fumitremorgin C (6), methylsulochrin (4) and bis(dethio)bis(methylthio)gliotoxin (3). Among them, fumitremorgin C (5) and 12,13-dihydroxy fumitremorgin C (6) were the most active. The cytotoxic activities of the extracts from Aspergillus sp. grown from 7 to 28 days were investigated, and they were associated with the kinetic production of the compounds. The most active extracts (14 and 21 days) were those with the highest relative concentrations of the compounds fumitremorgin C (5) and 12,13-dihydroxy fumitremorgin C (6).