Aims: To identify a new fungal strain, Hypocrea sp. F000527 producing a trichothecene metabolite, harzianum A, and to evaluate its cytotoxicity to tumour cell lines.
Methods and Results: A fungal strain, F000527, with cytotoxic activity was identified as a new Hypocrea strain based on morphological characteristics and internal transcribed spacers rDNA sequence data. Harzianum A was isolated from wheat bran culture by 50% acetone extraction, silica gel chromatography, Sephadex LH-20 chromatography and HPLC. The chemical structures were determined by ESI- or HRFAB-MS and 1H and 13C-NMR analyses. Harzianum A showed cytotoxicity to HT1080 and HeLa cell lines with IC50 value of 0·65 and 5·07 μg ml−1 respectively.
Conclusions: Harzianum A with a chemical formula of C23H28O6 was isolated from a new Hypocrea strain and showed moderate to strong cytotoxicity to human cancer cell lines.
Significance and Impact of the Study: This is the first report of the production of cytotoxic harzianum A by a new Hypocrea strain.