Chatragadda Ramesh1, Nambali Valsalan Vinithkumar1, Ramalingam Kirubagaran2
1Andaman and Nicobar Centre for Ocean Science and Technology, ESSO-NIOT, Dollygunj, Port Blair, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, India
2Marine Biotechnology Group, ESSO-National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT), Ministry of Earth Sciences (Govt. of India), Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India.
Antimicrobial properties of several nonpigmented bacteria isolated from the marine environment have been well understood. However, marine bacteria with distinct asset of pigmentation have not been studied intensively and explored unlike nonpigmented bacteria. Recently, several studies have found multidrug-resistant microbes against various diseases. Therefore, search for alternative novel and natural bioactive compounds is in demand at current research. Furthermore, the application of synthetic colorants in the food industry has several harmful effects; thus, exploring pigments from natural environments is important to substitute synthetic colorants. This review emphasizes marine pigmented bacteria as a potential alternative source of natural compounds as well as natural colorants. The antibacterial potential of marine bacterial pigmented compounds reported from the year 2000 to hitherto is detailed cogitatively in this review, along with the best-known paradigms of pigments such as prodigiosin and violacein. In parenthesis, some other important applications of well-studied prodigiosin and violacein pigment molecules are highlighted briefly.