Asian Journal of Biomedical and Pharmaceutical Sciences

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Screening of different fungi for production of lovastatin

Statin based compounds are widely accepted as cholesterol lowering agent. These are classified as natural, synthetic or semi synthetic derivatives of natural statins. Lovastatin is one the natural statin that acts as a competitive inhibitor of 3-hydroxy 3-methylglutaryl Coenzyme-A reductase (HMG Co-A reductase), the rate limiting enzyme of the cholesterol biosynthesis. Various fugal isolates are capable of producing lovastatin as secondary metabolite by polyketide synthesis pathway. In the present study, seven wild fungi were screened for lovastatin production by bioassay method against C. albicans and N. crassa. The results showed that, Aspergillus terreus NCIM 657 produced the maximum lovastatin (0.989 mg/ml) in the screening work through submerged fermentation. Other fungal isolates recorded lower yield of lovastatin. Further study with spectrum analysis at 238 nm and thin layer chromatography confirmed lovastatin synthesis by two more fungi i.e. Aspergillus parasiticus NCIM 898 and Phoma exigua NCIM 1237.

Author(s): Riya Dhar, Gourab Basu Choudhury, Vinod Kumar Nigam