Screening and purification of natural products from Actinomycetes that affect the cell shape of fission yeast

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This study was designed to identify bioactive compounds that alter the cellular shape of the fission yeast by affecting functions involved in the cell cycle or cell morphogenesis. We used a multidrug-sensitive fission yeast strain, SAK950 to screen a library of 657 actinomycete bacteria and identified 242 strains that induced eight different major shape phenotypes in These include the typical cell cycle-related phenotype of elongated cells, and the cell morphology-related phenotype of rounded cells. As a proof of principle, we purified four of these activities, one of which is a novel compound and three that are previously known compounds, leptomycin B, streptonigrin and cycloheximide. In this study, we have also shown novel effects for two of these compounds, leptomycin B and cycloheximide. The identification of these four compounds and the explanation of the phenotypes in terms of their known, or predicted bioactivities, confirm the effectiveness of this approach.