Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce

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Valerie Paul

    Valerie Paul
    Head Scientist

  • Phone: (772) 462-0982
  • Fax: (772) 461-8154
  • E-mail:
  • Mailing and Shipping Address:
  • Dr. Valerie Paul
    Smithsonian Marine Station
    701 Seaway Drive
    Fort Pierce, FL 34949 USA


Ph.D. 1985 - University of California at San Diego, Scripps Inst. of Oceanography, Marine Biology
B.A. 1979 - University of California at San Diego, Biology and Studies in Chemical Ecology

Research Interests

Ecological Roles of Marine Natural Products

Temporal and Spatial Variability of Benthic Cyanobacteria (Lyngbya spp.) in the Indian River Lagoon, Florida and Carrie Bow Cay, Belize

Impact of Toxic Cyanobacterial Blooms (Lyngbya spp.) on Coral Reef Habitats

Settlement and Metamorphosis of Larvae of Reef-Building Corals

Professional Activities

Council member, International Society for Reef Studies, 1992-1996, Advisory Editor for journal Coral Reefs (1993-present)

Member, Editorial Advisory Board, Journal of Natural Products, 2004-2008

Elected and served as Chair, Marine Natural Products Gordon Research Conference 2000, Vice-Chair of Conference in 1998

Member, California Sea Grant Committee, 2000-2001, 2006-2007

Program Director, NIH Minority Biomedical Research Support Grant, 1990-2002, advisor and mentor for numerous undergraduate and graduate (M.S. degree) Pacific Islander students

Recent Publications

Kwan, Jason C., Liu, Yanxia, Ratnayake, Ranjala, Hatano, Ryo, Kuribara, Akiko, Morimoto, Chiko, Ohnuma, Kei, Paul, Valerie J., Ye, Tao and Luesch, Hendrik. 2014. Grassypeptolides as Natural Inhibitors of Dipeptidyl Peptidase 8 and T-Cell Activation, Chembiochem, 15(6):799-804

Campbell, Justin E., Craft, Jonathan D., Muehllehner, Nancy, Langdon, Chris and Paul, Valerie J. 2014. Responses of calcifying algae (Halimeda spp.) to ocean acidification: implications for herbivores, Marine Ecology Progress Series, 514:43-56

Krediet, Cory J., Meyer, Julie L., Gimbrone, Nicholas, Yanong, Roy, Berzins, Ilze, Alagely, Ali, Castro, Herman, Ritchie, Kim B., Paul, Valerie J. and Teplitski, Max. 2014. Interactions between the tropical sea anemone Aiptasia pallida and Serratia marcescens, an opportunistic pathogen of corals, Environmental Microbiology Reports, 6(3):287-292

Sneed, Jennifer M., Sharp, Koty H., Ritchie, Kimberly B. and Paul, Valerie J. 2014. The chemical cue tetrabromopyrrole from a biofilm bacterium induces settlement of multiple Caribbean corals, Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 281(1786):20133086

Puglisi, Melany P., Sneed, Jennifer M., Sharp, Koty H., Ritson-Williams, Raphael and Paul, Valerie J. 2014. Marine chemical ecology in benthic environments, Natural Product Reports, 31:1510-1533

DeBose, Jennifer L. and Paul, Valerie J. 2014. Chemical signatures of multi-species foraging aggregations are attractive to fish, Marine Ecology Progress Series, 498:243-248

Meyer, Julie L., Paul, Valerie J. and Teplitski, Max. 2014. Community Shifts in the Surface Microbiomes of the Coral Porites astreoides with Unusual Lesions, Plos One, 9(6):1-9

Sauvage, Thomas, Wynne, Michael J., Paul, Valerie J. and Fredericq, Suzanne. 2014. Morphological and molecular clarification of the enigmatic Caulerpa floridana W.R. Taylor (Chlorophyta, Bryopsidales) from the Dry Tortugas, Florida, European Journal of Phycology, 49(3):370-383

Ritson-Williams, R., Arnold, S. N., Paul, Valerie J. and Steneck, R. S. 2014. Larval settlement preferences of Acropora palmata and Montastraea faveolata in response to diverse red algae, Coral Reefs, 33(1):59-66

Olsen, K., Ritson-Williams, R., Paul, Valerie J. and Ross, C. 2014. Combined effects of macroalgal presence and elevated temperature on the early life-history stages of a common Caribbean coral, Marine Ecology Progress Series, 509:181-191

Engene, Niclas, Paul, Valerie J., Byrum, Tara, Gerwick, William H., Thor, Andrea and Ellisman, Mark H. 2013. Five chemically rich species of tropical marine cyanobacteria of the genus Okeania gen. nov. (Oscillatoriales, Cyanoprokaryota), Journal of Phycology, 49(6):1095-1106

Krediet, Cory J., Ritchie, Kim B., Paul, Valerie J. and Teplitski, Max. 2013. Coral-associated micro-organisms and their roles in promoting coral health and thwarting diseases, Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 280(1755):20122328-20122328

Clark, Kathryn E., Capper, Angela, Della Togna, Gina, Paul, Valerie J., Romero, Luz I., Johns, Timothy, Cubilla-Rios, Luis and Capson, Todd L. 2013. Ecology- and bioassay-guided drug discovery for treatments of tropical parasitic disease: 5alpha,8alpha-epidioxycholest-6-en-3beta-ol isolated from the mollusk Dolabrifera dolabrifera shows significant activity against Leishmania donovani, Natural Product Communications, 8(11):1537-1540

Craft, Jonathan D., Paul, Valerie J. and Sotka, Erik E. 2013. Biogeographic and phylogenetic effects on feeding resistance of generalist herbivores toward plant chemical defenses, Ecology, 94(1):18-24

Engene, Niclas, Gunasekera, Sarath, Gerwick, William H. and Paul, Valerie J. 2013. Phylogenetic Inferences Reveal Large Extent of Novel Biodiversity in Chemically Rich Tropical Marine Cyanobacteria, Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 79(6):1882-1888

Pawlik, Joseph R., Amsler, Charles D., Ritson-Williams, Raphael, McClintock, James B., Baker, Bill J. and Paul, Valerie J. 2013. "Marine Chemical Ecology: A Science Born of Scuba". Pp. 53–69 in Research and Discoveries: The Revolution of Science through Scuba ().

Montaser, Rana, Paul, Valerie J. and Luesch, Hendrik. 2013. Modular Strategies for Structure and Function Employed by Marine Cyanobacteria: Characterization and Synthesis of Pitinoic Acids, Organic Letters, 15(16):4050-4053

Olsen, K., Ritson-Williams, R., Ochrietor, J. D., Paul, Valerie J. and Ross, C. 2013. Detecting hyperthermal stress in larvae of the hermatypic coral Porites astreoides: the suitability of using biomarkers of oxidative stress versus heat-shock protein transcriptional expression, Marine Biology, 160(10):2609-2618

Abed, Raeid M. M., Dobretsov, Sergey, Al-Fori, Marwan, Gunasekera, Sarath P., Sudesh, Kumar and Paul, Valerie J. 2013. Quorum-sensing inhibitory compounds from extremophilic microorganisms isolated from a hypersaline cyanobacterial mat, Journal of Industrial Microbiology & Biotechnology, 40(7):759-772

Salvador, Lilibeth A., Taori, Kanchan, Biggs, Jason S., Jakoncic, Jean, Ostrov, David A., Paul, Valerie J. and Luesch, Hendrik. 2013. Potent Elastase Inhibitors from Cyanobacteria: Structural Basis and Mechanisms Mediating Cytoprotective and Anti-Inflammatory Effects in Bronchial Epithelial Cells, Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, 56(3):1276-1290

Morrow, Kathleen M., Liles, Mark R., Paul, Valerie J., Moss, Anthony G. and Chadwick, Nanette E. 2013. Bacterial shifts associated with coral–macroalgal competition in the Caribbean Sea, Marine Ecology Progress Series, 488:103-117

Ratnayake, Ranjala, Liu, Yanxia, Paul, Valerie J. and Luesch, Hendrik. 2013. Cultivated Sea Lettuce is a Multiorgan Protector from Oxidative and Inflammatory Stress by Enhancing the Endogenous Antioxidant Defense System, Cancer Prevention Research, 6(9):989-999

Ross, C., Ritson-Williams, R., Olsen, K. and Paul, Valerie J. 2013. Short-term and latent post-settlement effects associated with elevated temperature and oxidative stress on larvae from the coral Porites astreoides, Coral Reefs, 32(1):71-79

Yotsu-Yamashita, Mari, Abe, Yuka, Kudo, Yuta, Ritson-Williams, Raphael, Paul, Valerie J., Konoki, Keiichi, Cho, Yuko, Adachi, Masaatsu, Imazu, Takuya, Nishikawa, Toshio and Isobe, Minoru. 2013. First Identification of 5,11-Dideoxytetrodotoxin in Marine Animals, and Characterization of Major Fragment Ions of Tetrodotoxin and Its Analogs by High Resolution ESI-MS/MS, Marine Drugs, 11(8):2799-2813

Wang, Rui, Paul, Valerie J. and Luesch, Hendrik. 2013. Seaweed extracts and unsaturated fatty acid constituents from the green alga Ulva lactuca as activators of the cytoprotective Nrf2-ARE pathway, Free Radical Biology and Medicine, 57:141-153

Sharp, Koty H., Distel, Dan and Paul, Valerie J. 2012. Diversity and dynamics of bacterial communities in early life stages of the Caribbean coral Porites astreoides, The ISME Journal, 6(4):790-801

Montaser, Rana, Paul, Valerie J. and Luesch, Hendrik. 2012. Marine Cyanobacterial Fatty Acid Amides Acting on Cannabinoid Receptors, Chembiochem, 13(18):2676-2681

Paerl, Hans W. and Paul, Valerie J. 2012. Climate Change: Links to Global Expansion of Harmful Cyanobacteria, Water research, 46:1349-1363

Morrow, Kathleen M., Ritson-Williams, Raphael, Ross, Cliff, Liles, Mark R. and Paul, Valerie J. 2012. Macroalgal Extracts Induce Bacterial Assemblage Shifts and Sublethal Tissue Stress in Caribbean Corals, PLoS ONE, 7(9):1-12

Paul, Valerie J., Kuffner, Ilsa B., Walters, Linda J., Ritson-Williams, Raphael, Beach, Kevin S. and Becerro, Mikel A. 2011. Chemically mediated interactions between macroalgae Dictyota spp. and multiple life-history stages of the coral Porites astreoides, Marine Ecology Progress Series, 426:161-170

Salvador, Lilibeth A., Biggs, Jason S., Paul, Valerie J. and Luesch, Hendrik. 2011. Veraguamides A-G, Cyclic Hexadepsipeptides from a Dolastatin 16-Producing Cyanobacterium Symploca cf. hydnoides from Guam, Journal of natural products, 74(5):917-927

Paul, Valerie J., Ritson-Williams, Raphael and Sharp, Koty. 2011. Marine chemical ecology in benthic environments, Natural Product Reports, 28:345-387

Montaser, Rana, Abboud, Khalil A., Paul, Valerie J. and Luesch, Hendrik. 2011. Pitiprolamide, a Proline-Rich Dolastatin 16 Analogue from the Marine Cyanobacterium Lyngbya majuscula from Guam, Journal of Natural Products, 74(1):109-112

Fong, Peggy and Paul, Valerie J. 2011. "Coral Reef Algae". Pp. 241-272 in Coral Reefs: An Ecosystem in Transition (Dubinsky, Zvy and Stambler, Noga). Springer Science + Business Media B.V

Montaser, Rana, Paul, Valerie J. and Luesch, Hendrik. 2011. Pitipeptolides C-F, antimycobacterial cyclodepsipeptides from the marine cyanobacterium Lyngbya majuscula from Guam, Phytochemistry, 72(16):2068-2074

Morrow, K. M., Paul, Valerie J., Liles, M. R. and Chadwick, N. E. 2011. Allelochemicals produced by Caribbean macroalgae and cyanobacteria have species-specific effects on reef coral microorganisms, Coral Reefs, 30(2):309-320

Gunasekera, Sarath P., Owle, Chivas S., Montaser, Rana, Luesch, Hendrik and Paul, Valerie J. 2011. Malyngamide 3 and cocosamides A and B from the marine cyanobacterium Lyngbya majuscula from Cocos Lagoon, Guam, Journal of natural products, 74(4):871-876

Kuffner, Ilsa B., Hickey, T. D., Paul, Valerie J., Morrison, Jennifer M., Walters, Linda J., Grablow, Katie R., Turner, Teresa and Parish, Edward R. 2011. Half-dead colonies of Montastraea annularis release viable gametes on a degraded reef in the U.S. Virgin Islands, Bulletin of Marine Science, 87(4):855-856

Meickle, Theresa, Gunasekera, Sarath P., Liu, Yanxia, Luesch, Hendrik and Paul, Valerie J. 2011. Porpoisamides A and B, two novel epimeric cyclic depsipeptides from a Florida Keys collection of Lyngbya sp, Bioorganic & medicinal chemistry, 19(22):6576-6580

Dobretsov, Sergey, Teplitski, Max, Bayer, Mirko, Gunasekera, Sarath, Proksch, Peter and Paul, Valerie J. 2011. Inhibition of marine biofouling by bacterial quorum sensing inhibitors, Biofouling, 27(8):893-905

Kwan, Jason C., Meickle, Theresa, Ladwa, Dheran, Teplitski, Max, Paul, Valerie J. and Luesch, Hendrik. 2011. Lyngbyoic acid, a "tagged" fatty acid from a marine cyanobacterium, disrupts quorum sensing in Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Molecular Biosystems, 7(4):1205-1216


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