Signalling molecules inducing metamorphosis in marine organisms.
Covering: findings from early 1980s until early 2022Microbial-derived cues of marine biofilms induce settlement and metamorphosis of marine organisms, a process responsible for the emergence of diverse flora and fauna in marine habitats. Although this phenomenon is known for more than 80 years, the research field has only recently gained much momentum. Here, we summarize the currently existing biochemical and microbial knowledge about microbial signalling molecules, con-specific signals, and synthetic compounds that induce or prevent recruitment, settlement, and metamorphosis in invertebrate larvae. We discuss the possible modes of action and conclude with perspectives for future research directions in the field of marine chemical ecology.