Pheromones are neuronal signaling molecules that are synthesized by numerous organisms, which typically stimulate individuals of the same species to react to the environmental stressors or stimuli, such as heat shifts, nutritional changes, or biological stimuli.
Ascarosides (ascr) are a class of small molecules isolated and identified in Caenorhabditis elegans and other nematodes. Structurally, ascarosides are derived from glycosides of the dideoxy sugars L-ascarylose and L-paratose, which are further incorporated with diverse building blocks from primary metabolism such as amino acid, nucleoside, carbohydrate, and fatty acid metabolism.
Over the past few decades, ascarosides have been found to regulated numerous biological processes in nematodes, including dauer formation, mating behaviors, and social aggregation etc. Several different dauer-inducing ascarosides have been isolated from C. elegans. For instance, the most potent and abundant ascaroside is ascr#5, C3 ascaroside, followed by ascr#2 (C6) and ascr#3 (C9). Furthermore, chemically synthesized versions of these ascarosides are shown to promote dauer formation as well.
Figure 1. ascaroside examples detected in C. elegans dauer-inducing pheromones.
The structural complexity of ascarosides, with variations of side chains and functional group modifications, results in a diverse array of compounds, each with unique biological activities. This diversity is not just a chemical curiosity; it represents the sophistication of chemical communication in C. elegans. Research into the specific functions and mechanisms of these compounds enhances our understanding of nematode ecology and evolution, as well as broader biological principles.
Our aim is to support and enrich research in this field by providing detailed, up-to-date scientific information on ascarosides. From the latest discoveries in ascaroside biosynthesis to their ecological implications, we strive to be a comprehensive resource for scientists and researchers. Our catalog features a diverse array of ascarosides, each rigorously tested to meet stringent quality standards. From the well-known ascr#2 to the more elusive ascr#3, our products cover a broad spectrum of C. elegans pheromones. Whether you're conducting in-depth behavioral studies or exploring developmental pathways, our ascarosides provide the reliability and specificity your research demands.